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2023 Padres Season Review: Manny Machado

Looking back on Manny Machado’s 2023 season!

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at San Diego Padres Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

2023 Regular Season Statistics

3.5 fWAR, 138 G, .258 AVG, .319 OBP, .462 SLG, 114 wRC+, 75 R, 91 RBI, 30 HR

Positives From This Season

Well one positive was that fans knew going into the season that Manny Machado was going to be a Padre for the rest of his career. Machado ended up having his eighth 30 HR season and finished with his second-highest fWAR in San Diego. The problem was his production was nowhere close to where it needed to be.

Negatives From This Season

Usually for a guy like this there aren’t too many negatives but this year there were plenty so where should we start? How about his underwhelming offensive numbers.

After having an MVP caliber 2022 season (he should’ve won it), he got out of the gates really slowly. The 31-year-old didn’t get his first home run until the 14th game of the year and was hitting just .231/.282/.372 through his first 40 games before going on the IL with a fractured left hand.

He had a better post All-Star break performance (15 HR, .801 OPS) but it still wasn’t anywhere close to his 2022 post All-Star break performance (.907 OPS).

With this said, it wouldn’t be fair to write about how disappointing he was and not mention that he was dealing with elbow pain and probably some other unknown injuries throughout the season. Machado had surgery today in Los Angeles to repair the extensor tendon in his right elbow. His estimated recovery timeline is 4-6 months.

There were things off the field that didn’t make this a good year for Machado either. Kevin Acee came out with a report in September detailing that some players didn’t think they could hold the clubhouse leader accountable and how he would speak up in a lot of the players meetings but then wouldn’t follow through on what was said during those talks.

Machado essentially told Acee that he wasn’t a believer in team culture being important: “What is this, college baseball? What is this, high school?”

Sure, culture isn’t everything but there are plenty of teams in the postseason this year that do the little things right and their stars don’t view themselves as bigger than the team.

Machado doesn’t seem to be the type of leader that has a big voice—he leads by fighting through injuries and being in the lineup every day—but changes in the clubhouse and in roster construction need to be made so this 2023 season doesn’t happen again.