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GM Jed Hoyer on Mat Latos: "He's struggling"

XX Sports Radio: Jed Hoyer Interview with Darren Smith (MP3)

  • On Mat Latos:
    "He's struggling. I think he's certainly healthy.  He's throwing hard.  His location has been poor.  It's early, we're not concerned about it yet.  We certainly want to see a good start or two going into the beginning season, for his own confidence. "
    "He's leaving balls up in the zone.  He's searching a little bit.  His tempo has been off.  He's been taking too long between pitches and over thinking it."
  • Hoyer says that Heath Bell and Adrian Gonzalez struggled last year in Spring Training.  "I watch a lot of players with super star potential not play like it in Spring, but all of a sudden find it."  It's not time to worry too much yet.
  • Mat Latos said to Beat Writer Corey Brock "You don't have anything better to do today?" when seeing media at his Minor League start.  Hoyer says "Probably not something you should say, but at the same time I think it was something he said in jest."
  • Hoyer defers to Buddy Black when asked if Latos will be the Opening Day starter.  Black will make the decision in the next week or two.  "He was our best pitcher last year and if that gives him a leg up for that job or that assignment then that might be appropriate."
  • The only guy that could be a possible "big brother in the rotation" for Mat Latos on the team is Aaron Harang.  "Mentioning leaders in the clubhouse and who's going to fill that void, it's kind of a slippery slope to go down because you're never going to focus on that on a positive note, it's always going to be a negative."
  • In Wade LeBlanc's last start he threw the best 2 2/3's innings that Hoyer had ever seen him throw, then it really unraveled on him and he really struggled and gave up a few home runs.  He still has a grip on the 5th starter job.  He needs to start extending his starts. The Padres won't need a 5th starter for a while and they can make that decision during the season.  "We'd like it to be Wade."  
  • Dustin Mosely has thrown really well. He'll be on the team, either as a "long guy in the bullpen" or as a 5th starter.
  • The Padres have a hard schedule early.
  • Kyle Phillips, Rob Johnson and Guillermo Quiroz have played well recently, but the Padres will probably look outside the organization for an additional back up catcher.  They are going to try and create depth at that position, because they'll probably use 4 catchers throughout the year.  The Padres will not start the season with 3 catchers.
  • Anthony Rizzo is doing well.  He had a really good camp.  He's a driven athlete and a great kid.  "He's a fun guy to root for." 
  • It's a real concern not to over hype young players, for both the fans and the players.  It's not fair to rush them through the system or treat them differently.