Padres Chairman Ron Fowler sounds really depressed in his interview with Dan Sileo on Mighty1090AM. I transcribed some of his quotes.
It's been embarrassing. I don't know how else to put it. The performance on the road trip, 1-7, was pathetic. I'm a very competitive individual and I think I've won a lot, more than I've lost in life. This baseball experience has been very frustrating, very embarrassing. Performance by our team yesterday was -- I can understand how Kroc would have grabbed the microphone-- it's that frustrating. To have a starter like [James] Shields to perform as poorly as he did yesterday I think is an embarrassment to the team and an embarrassment to him. It's about as frustrating as it can get but we've got to get through.
Even when he tries to switch to a more hopeful tone he quickly slips back into negativity.
We've got a draft coming up in a little over a week, next week from Thursday and we've got international stuff going on. I know A.J. [Preller] and our guys are very busy and we've got to look beyond it. In a normal environment if you had performed as bad as we have over the past three years you'd probably be unemployed, but it's baseball with guaranteed contracts. We've got to get beyond it."
In a fair and just world, the executive leadership would probably be unemployed too for their track record of decision making.
Fowler has very little patience for growing a winning baseball team. He wants success now and they've sacrificed the future to bring us the last two turd seasons. Sileo asks him if this baseball venture has been his biggest struggle for success. Fowler says that it is.
"This is by far the slowest. It seems like, that at every turn -- we've got great pitching in '14 what we're going to do is add some offense to it and we think we can take a run at it. In '15 that was a miserable failure. We kept some of the key players intact this year and we thought we'd be at least a .500 baseball team and we're anything but.
I'd like to break through .400 and stay above .400 in terms of winning percentage, but it's very frustrating. Some days you just want to stay in bed and pull the covers over your head but that doesn't get it done.
We've got a lot of people working very hard to make this come together. The other aspects of the team in terms of the ballpark or the event experience and such we've done well. The winning and losing we've been miserable failures so far there's no other way to describe it."
Dan Sileo tries to place the blame on the players and take some of the heat off the Padres front office. Fowler to his credit places the blame back on the organization.
It's on the player but the organization has to take responsibility for probably having the wrong players. We don't have a team out there now that is competing effectively.
As bad as the players are Fowler however thinks that the Padres have a good manager and coaching staff, probably the best he's ever seen.
Sileo turns the questioning to the All-Star Game saying that having the game in San Diego and bringing attention to the club that is performing so badly won't win them any fringe fans.
Yeah, it's very accurate. We want to get them to the ballpark we want to have them see the fan experience and what the ballpark is all about, but ultimately we've got to win and if you don't win then there's only so often they'll come out and see us.
The lack of patience from leadership is again evident with them rushing to bring the ASG to town before they had a club worth showing off.
Fowler says that moves will have to be made this season, which I guess he learned from the results of standing pat at the trade deadline last year.
We can't stay same old, same old with the way we're playing.
But he then emphasizes like he did last year that at the deadline that they're not going to make changes to just make changes, they have to improve the club.
To stay status quo, probably unless we start playing a lot better is not likely. You have to get value in return.
Fowler still thinks that they have more talent on the roster than is being shown on the field, which probably isn't accurate.
Team leadership from veterans has to be there and I know the managers and coaches are working their butts off to make this come together. It just doesn't show on the field and that's what's frustrating.
Dan Sileo then asks for a letter grade for GM A.J. Preller so far, which Fowler avoids but sounds like an incomplete.
We hired A.J. because we knew we needed to develop a farm system and we had to do far better in international. I think this draft coming up and international signing period on July 2nd will give us a far better view of A.J. I will say this, he's done a spectacular job of building the player development area. I think the players we have in the farm system now as a group are stronger than we had before.
We rolled the dice with him on some major league signings and major league trades and we collectively have to look at that decide if it came together as good as we wanted. I don't think there's a brighter GM out there or anybody that works harder but the results are not there and I think A.J. would be the first one to tell you that.
Sileo then asks Fowler if he had to do the Matt Kemp deal again, if he would do it.
I can't say that. Matt's had some great days with us and some that have not been so good. I think Matt's his own worst critic. We had to get some power on the ball club and I think he provides it. I just hope he can be more consistent.
The results of Fowler's reign, while good intentioned, has been brutal beyond words. I'm ready for changes at high levels in the front office. I have zero confidence in their ability to build a winning team or anything else for that matter.