The Padres hosted a Town Hall meeting yesterday afternoon. I wasn’t there, but I was sent snippets of video and pictures. It’s all the information one needs to form uninformed opinions. In recent months, the prospect of listening to Padres leadership has been unbearable for me, so you’ll forgive me if I’m not overly enthused with this new direction that sounds like the new direction of old leadership going back to Sandy Alderson. I’m weary.
Padres motivational speaker and manager Andy Green spoke first to warm up the crowd. I just haven’t been able to warm up to his presence on the team yet. I think it might be my own backlash to the media’s unanimous adoration of him upon his arrival.
Next came the inevitable blaming of past ownership for all the current ownership’s continued failures. I’m sure there were challenges upon taking over the team, but bringing them up 4 years later isn’t the accountability I think fans are looking for. Plus Keith Law ranked the Padres as the number one farm system in baseball back in 2012, prior to the ownership change.
Always start by blaming everything on past ownership. pic.twitter.com/24B76B1mgS— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) August 4, 2016
Next came the 4 steps of the Padres’ plan. Our own SD Hat Guy already dug into these.
These are all fine and good in theory, but they come 4 years too late. When this new leadership took control, their four steps were:
1. Leadership Smugness
2. Lack of patience
3. Commitment to the All-Star Game
4. Go for broke phase
After a consistent losing record and persistent turmoil they seem to have given up their manifesto of competing while they build. Now they’ve retreated to the much more realistic timeline for success. They want 2-5 years to suck while they rebuild. It doesn’t sound like the sucking they’ve already been doing for the last 3 years counts into their estimate.
Broadcaster Jesse Agler was the host for the Town Hall. Executive Chairman Ron Fowler, President Mike Dee and General Manager A.J. Preller were all in attendance.
The lifeguards are on duty if you start to drown in rhetoric. pic.twitter.com/49teOYEN7v— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) August 4, 2016
It seems that Fowler did most of the talking early on. I still don’t understand why, but apparently he called the Padres “a bunch of dirtbags”. He meant that as a compliment, saying they’re young people that want to play hard. You know “dirtbags”.
The Union-Tribune has more info from Fowler. He’s mad that he has to pay players money and they don’t win him championships.
“I’ll be damned if we’re going to pay high-priced talent to sit on their butts and not perform,” Fowler said.
“We made a conscious decision to ship them out because we want people that are prepared to improve,” Fowler said. “If you’re making a lot of money and you think you’re already there, you’re not going to get better.“… They had a bad attitude. You saw Kemp’s letter. Talk about a bunch of b.s.”
“Most of ’em are gone, thank God.”
Most of them? I’m sure that won’t the upset the current players. Plus, basically everyone Fowler is criticizing are players that his baseball operations department signed. Most fans were caught up in the off-season prior to the 2015 season, but Fowler dismisses it all as an experiment gone wrong. I’ll say.
“That was a bad experiment,” Fowler said. “The chemistry wasn’t there. But we took a run at it.”
Meanwhile, the Padres weren’t just making bad decisions on the field. They were upsetting fans. President Mike Dee says they are reworking their new ticket-exchange policy and returning Friday home games to a civilized 7:10 start. It’s about time.
As for Preller he did some explaining of his rebuild strategy.
Mike Dee annoyingly dangled the carrot of brown uniforms in front of fans for the hundredth time. He thinks because the Padres wear the brown on Friday’s that we’ve been appeased. He’s wrong, as usual.
I haven't watched these videos yet. pic.twitter.com/qZIfqtut4d— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) August 4, 2016
I guess that’s about it. It seemed like a real good time.