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Padres Round-up 08/27/20

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Game postponed? No problem, let’s play two!

Seattle Mariners v San Diego Padres Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Good morning, Padres fans. In line with several other sports leagues such as the NBA, WNBA, and MLS, and four other teams in MLB, the Padres and Mariners agreed to postpone last night’s game. As a result, the Padres and Mariners will instead play a double-header today to complete the series, with RHP Dinelson Lamet facing off against Seattle’s RHP Taijuan Walker TBD (never mind; Seattle traded Walker this morning to the Blue Jays) in the front half, and RHP Garrett Richards taking the hill against LHP Yusei Kikuchi in the back-half. Per MLB’s for this 60-game season, both games will be 7-inning affairs. The first game will start at 1210 Pacific time, and the 2nd game to start about 30 minutes after the first game ends.

Author’s note: I get that the current environment is tense, for multiple reasons, and we’re all stressed. Let’s try to keep today’s conversations respectful, folks, and please, remain empathetic to your fellow man. Thanks.

Let’s get into news and notes from yesterday.

  • Shortly after agreeing to postpone last night’s game, each team released a statement, explaining their reasoning. The Mariners, with 11 African-American players on their 40-man roster and eight on their 28-man, the most of any Major League team, have been active as an organization in promoting the Black Lives Matter movement since George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police sparked nationwide calls for social justice and racial equality in late May. The Padres stated “We understand the Mariners’ decision to postpone tonight’s game and we support the players’ efforts to use their platform to bring awareness to the very serious issue of racial injustice impacting our country today.”
  • With the Padres primed to make the playoffs for the first time since 2006, the potential of moving into a “bubble” for the playoffs (one of several ideas MLB has floated so far to mitigate potential disruptions brought on by the pandemic) has been met with lukewarm reactions by several players. One of those players is LHP Matt Strahm, who with his wife are expecting their first child in mid-October. “My family is always going to come first,” the Padres’ reliever said. “If it becomes a bubble situation, I obviously have something more important I need to take care of — welcoming my daughter into this world. Obviously, I’m going to choose that.”
  • The Padres continue to remain vigilant regarding RHP Chris Paddack’s recent struggles. One theory making the rounds is that the 24-year old is tipping his pitches. “We’re on it,” manager Jayce Tingler said after the Padres’ 8-3 loss to the Mariners when asked about the possibility Paddack is tipping pitches. “… We’ve noticed times he has, whether that’s this year or certainly looking at video from last year. We thought we’d cleaned those up. But there could be something we’re missing.” The team doubts Paddack is tipping his pitches, and instead believe it’s mostly Paddack missing his spots, particularly with his fastball.
  • In trade deadline news, the Padres continue to work the phones, looking to acquire a reliever to supplement their hard-hit bullpen. However, the team’s plans remain “open,” according to Chairman Ron Fowler, with the team’s potential financial issues remaining a serious concern. “We know next year is going to be tough because we expect restricted seating (at home games) and full (player) compensation, so you have to go in with your eyes open,” said Fowler. While economic challenges won’t stop the Padres from trying to better themselves at the deadline, the team seems more focused on only adding players who will be able to help for multiple years than simply bolstering their roster with rentals. The rotation, bullpen, catcher, and the outfield are all spots the Padres could look to upgrade, according to Dennis Lin of The Athletic.
  • If the team adds anyone before the deadline, it’ll likely be through internal measures. LHP Joey Lucchesi, who has voiced a willingness to throw out of the bullpen if necessary, remains the most likely option, while LHP MacKenzie Gore remains a possibility, but is still displaying some issues the team wants him to work out. The Padres don’t believe Gore has been pitching at a level that is as good as (or better than) what they currently have, specifically their expectations for consistent command of all his pitches. “When he’s checked all those boxes and we feel there’s not any more development time needed, we’ll start looking at him at the major league level,” GM AJ Preller said.

That’s it for today. Go Padres!!!