I’m sorry. I can’t help it. In the Latest Leaders, I got #31. And I’m going to do something kind of radical this time (unless you want to learn about Robert Woodard again…I didn’t think so. Besides, I just brilliantly figured out that #31 is retired for the Padres. I could dedicate this to him, but…). So, in a warped version of Jimmy’s tradition, I dedicate my #31 ranking to #51, baseball’s all-time saves leader, forever a Padre, Trevor Hoffman.
*Sniff sniff* OK, Kaybee, pull yourself together.
Trevor, you’re really a Brewer. I mean, I’ve known for months that you will be in THAT uniform, but to see you there, it’s tough, man. Not having you in Peoria is really hard. I only experienced one Spring Training that you were in. But it was really neat to hear you pitch in Spring Training 2008, after that long hard offseason of dwelling on Game 163. It was so great for you to get out there and pitch some scoreless innings.
This year, you are certainly doing your own thing. I mean, you’re not even with the team as they go play their games! If you were still with the Padres, would you do the same thing? Pitch bullpens instead of pitching in the actual games? Stay behind in Peoria while we went to play other teams? I guess we won’t find out until next year, when you sign with the Padres again (*cough* *cough* hint hint).
It’s been so different here without you. There’s definitely something missing from the clubhouse, but I think the guys have accepted that you aren’t going to be there all season. That’s really tough, but they gotta accept it. It’s no use dwelling on the past, on what could have been. What happened isn’t going to change. The guys have got to move on, and so do the fans.
That’s going to be really hard. I don’t think we will really be able to say good-bye until the Padres have a save situation for the first time in the regular season. Normally (because Trevor Time is normal; it’s what we’re used to), we stand in anticipation after the last out in the bottom of the eighth. The bells start. BONG. BONG. BONG. We smile, starting to scream and jump around as the all-time saves leader, the Padre, trots out of the bullpen. But this time, we will stand, waiting for the bells, and they will never come. No, this time Heath Bell will come lumbering out of the bullpen. Instead of the leg kick, we will watch the arm-slinging. Heath is cowboy-style: big, lumbering, jerky, and fast. You are all style, very smooth. Leg way up, glove to your chest, then arms spreading out as your leg comes down and you push off, smoothly releasing the ball towards home plate. Soft thud in the catcher’s glove as the bat totally misses that deceptive change-up.
We will miss Trevor Time. That will probably be the hardest to deal with. But you know what we will also miss? We will miss YOU, not just as a pitcher, but as a person. We won’t get to watch you warm up during BP, we won’t be able to try to get your autograph. We won’t see you wandering in the streets of San Diego with your wife and kids. We won’t get to see your boys playing around in the ballpark. We won’t get to see you doing all the wonderful work in the community that you’ve been doing for so long. We won’t get to read your insightful quotes in the newspaper, we won’t get to read about your humorous exploits (the ball cart in BP…LOL). Oh, sure, we can read about the stuff you do with the Brewers, but it’s no where near the same. I have no doubt that you and the Padres will meet sometime this year, whether it be in Spring Training, Petco Park, or Milwaukee. I have a feeling that you will pitch against the Padres sometime this year, and it’s going to be hard. But if you come out to close a game against the Padres in Petco, you are going to get a wonderful ovation.
Trevor, it’s going to be a long season. There will be many moments where we say, “I wish Trevor were here” or “Trevor would have been able to save that game”. It’s going to be hard. It will be so bittersweet to see you in the Brewers uniform. We know that you will do very well for the Brewers, and we wish you all the best. But we can’t help but think that you could be doing that in the Padres uniform. You are San Diego, man. We will miss your humor, your class, your kindness, your presence.
But we are holding on to the hope that you will come back to San Diego next year. We’re CLINGING to that hope. And until you say otherwise, we will expect that you are coming back. You wanted to be here this year. You gave San Diego the chance to bring you back. But you had to move on, so you went to the Brewers. We miss you so much, Trevor. I can’t believe you’re gone! But we want to see you in the Padres uniform again next year. After a whole season without you, we want to relieve the pain. We want you to end your amazing career here in San Diego. We want our star closer back. We want the All-Time Saves Leader back in San Diego. And we’re clinging to the hope that that will happen. We love you, Trevor!
Thank you so much to all my readers for getting me to where I am. Without you guys, this blog had no purpose. So thank you so much for reading about Padres baseball, and I’m looking forward to covering the Padres all season! THANK YOU!!
(photo credit: ESPN.com)
- 4-3 Padres
It was a great game. Josh Geer threw two innings and only allowed one run. Outfielder Emil Brown hit a three run homer in the bottom of the first after two walks to give the Padres a 3-0 lead. We did not give up that lead for the rest of the game. Pitcher Mat Latos, who is still trying to find home plate this spring, gave up a two-run homer that tied the game. But no worries, as infielder Travis Denker drove the winning run in with an RBI double in the fourth. Cesar Ramos (first round pick), Nick Schmidt (first round pick), Jae Kuk Ryu, Cesar Carrillo (first round pick), Ivan Nova, and Matt Buschmann all had scoreless innings. We really have a lot of great arms here in camp. It will be very interesting to see who will make it to the Opening Day roster!
And no, Trevor did not pitch. In fact, he wasn’t even with the team. He’s kind of doing his own thing this year. Like he preferred having a bullpen session to pitching in an actual game. Maybe he has to be taking it more easy because he’s getting so old (42). Or maybe he likes to stay as far away from his new teammates as he can. Who knows, but whatever Trevor thinks he needs to do to prepare for the season, the Brewers better let him do it. I do not doubt that Trevor and the Padres will meet again soon.
I listened to XX 1090 for while after the game, Darren Smith’s show. He’s actually out there in Peoria this week, so about 20 minutes after the game he talked to Buddy Black. It was an interesting interview. Buddy talked about a bunch of the players in camp who have a chance at the Opening Day roster. He sounded like he had a cold, but it was a good interview. Immediately after Buddy left, Heath Bell came on. I love Heath, I really do, and I really enjoy watching him pitch. But he’s the one who is going to be in Trevor’s spot this year. He’s not replacing Trevor, but he’s taking his spot. He kept saying how he’s the leader in the bullpen now. I really like Heath, and I’m sure he will do very well, but there’s that bitterness in the background, you know? I thought it was a pretty intense interview, or rather Heath was being really intense. He’s going to be a leader with his words in that clubhouse, there’s no doubt about it. He considers himself a kid, but he’s going to be really serious about his work. I know that. Even his wife considers him her “fourth child”. But I can tell that he’s going to bring a different intensity to the closer’s role. Trevor was always so cool, so calm. He just trotted out there and went about his business. But Heath is going to probably be more emotional on the mound. It’s going to be different ’cause Heath can throw a lot harder than Trevor. Plus, their styles of pitching are obviously different. Like Heath said, one of the hardest parts of this transition is winning over the fans. Heath is going to be playing in the WBC for USA. He just found out yesterday. Something funny he said in the interview was that he doesn’t talk to opposing batters because he wants them to think that he’s slightly crazy and wacko. But now he’s going to have to talk to his USA teammates! I guess he wouldn’t like the All-Star game much, then…
Today we are facing the Dodgers! Talk about a rivalry. We are going to be facing them in Petco for the first four games of the regular season. That is going to be very interesting. At least they don’t have Manny (yet). Chris Young is starting against Chad Billingsley. Billingsley seems like the type of guy that we’ve hit hard in the past. We’ll have to see how it goes, but I think CY will be pretty solid. Unfortunately, Corey Brock does not have the lineup up yet. I got up too early this morning. Oh well. Hopefully we will roll out a good lineup that will hit the Dodgers hard. GO PADRES!!
- 4-2 Padres
I didn’t get to hear the game at all, so this entry is based on a boxscore. Jake Peavy made his second start of the spring and went three innings. He allowed one hit, and then retired the next eight batters. Sounds like all his stuff was really good, and he was obviously very effective. After the game, he was on a plane to Florida to get really to play for Team USA in the WBC. I am very pleased that he is doing so well so early. Hopefully Jake will be our Opening Day starter! Wade LeBlanc took the next two innings and gave up two runs. Justin Hampson, Arturo Lopez, Greg Burke and Edwin Moreno also threw a scoreless inning each.
On the offensive side, we got three runs in the bottom of the first! Will Venable and Travis Denker drove in runs. Chase Headley had a couple hits and drove in a run. It was a really good game for the Padres. And about 7,000 people out there! I knew there would be a lot of Padres fans out there!
Today we are playing the Brewers, and I bet that Trevor is scheduled to pitch. Well, it actually looks like he’s going on his own schedule, but I bet he’s going to pitch against us today. Figures…but if he does, I am totally going to cry. Oh, I just read Corey Brock’s blog, and Trevor is not scheduled to pitch. But knowing Trevor, I’m sure he would make a surprise appearance…just kidding 🙂 Anyways, here’s the lineup:
- CF Jody Gerut
- 2B Chris Burke
- RF Brian Giles
- DH Cliff Floyd
- LF Emil Brown
- 1B Kyle Blanks
- C Eliezer Alfonso
- 3B Travis Denker
- SS Evereth Cabrera
Josh Geer is starting for two innings, followed by Mat Latos, Cesar Ramos, Nick Schmidt, Jae Kuk Ryu, Cesar Carrillo, Ivan Nova, and Matt Buschmann.
Alright, here I go again. Support group, stand by.
As most of you probably know, Trevor Hoffman was introduced to his new team at the Brewers’ fanfest on Saturday. There are some excellent pictures on Happy’s blog, and I would encourage you to check them out.
I think it’s time for me to let go. Trevor’s a Brewer, that’s not going to change. He’s not going to be in a Padres’ uniform this season. He might not even be in a Padres uniform next season. It’s just going to be so weird to see Heath trot out of that bullpen for the first time in the ninth. What song will they play? They’d better not flash “HEATH TIME” on the scoreboard and blare “Hell’s Bells”. Trevor’s still going to play “Hells Bells”, enter to Trevor Time. It just doesn’t fit. The 9th is going to be very different for Padres fans and Brewers fans alike. Trevor is all we’ve even known in the 9th inning. How will we adjust to Heath? How will the Brewers fans adjust to Trevor? Just watch, Trevor’s going to have 35-40 saves, maybe with an All-Star appearance. He might even win a World Series. Happy’s pictures are definitely going to help, but Trevor’s going to be in the Brewers’ uniform in all of them. It’s just going to be so weird. But it is what it is. Trevor’s a Brewer, and nothing’s going to change that.
Elrond: He is not coming back.
Arwen: There is still hope!!!
Arwen is right. Remember from the Lord of the Rings? Arwen wanted to stay in Middle Earth and wait for her sweetheart to come back from defeating the bad guys.
Remember, Arwen is immortal. Aragorn is not. But anyways, the point is, Daddy wanted her to give up. But Arwen wanted to believe that Aragorn would come back. Turns out, she decides to stay, almost dies, and she marries Aragorn and lives happily ever after until he dies.
What does this have to do with Trevor Hoffman, you say? There is still hope that Trevor will come back to San Diego to pitch for the Padres. Slim? Oh yeah. But it’s hope. He declined the second-year option with the Brewers. He wanted to come back to San Diego this year. But things just fell apart. He hasn’t come out and said why he didn’t want the option. Maybe it’s because he’s holding onto the hope of coming back to San Diego. Maybe he’s planning on retiring after the 2009 season. I really don’t know why. But I hope so much that a deal can be reached next year. Hopefully, with a new owner, we will be able to get something done with Trevor. That’s hope, peoples. And until he says otherwise, I will assume that Trevor wants to come back next year. Now, I think I am over Trevor. Can’t guarantee it, but I think I’m good. Thanks support group!!
Nope, I’m still not over him leaving yet. Look, it’s only been about two weeks. If a close family member moves away, you are not going to get over them for quite a while. So, in one of my last tributes (maybe), we will look at Trevor’s career so far…with pictures!
Trevor is going to be officially announced as a Milwaukee Brewer on Saturday.
Yesterday, Trevor Hoffman officially signed a one-year, $6 million deal with incentives with the Milwaukee Brewers. Wow, that picture looks so weird! Anyways, I wonder if there will be a press conference. Trevor probably doesn’t want all the attention, but the Brewers might want it. “Hell’s Bells” will be playing in Miller Park this year. We are going to miss him.
For those who recommened that I send my entry Why Trevor? to the Padres’ front office, it’s in the mail right now. I have no idea if they will ever get to it, but it was certainly worth a try. Last night I remembered that General Manager Kevin Towers never watched Trevor when he went out to get a save. KT was too superstitous. New theory: since KT has never seen it, he doesn’t know how much it means to Padres fans! Right…
In other Padres news, we signed two players! Last year, we signed pitcher Mark Prior to a one-year deal. He got hurt, had surgery, and didn’t throw a pich for us even in a Spring Training game. Now the Padres have given him a second chance. It will be very interesting to see if he can come back after all his rehab and do well for the Padres. He has not piched since 2006, but I hope he can do well. Depending on his spring, he might be in the rotation. Let’s see: Jake Peavy, Chris Young, Cha Sueng Baek, Mark Prior, and Kevin Correia. I like it! But I think there will be a bit of a competition for those last two spots. Josh Geer and Wade LeBlanc might be in there, too.
We also signed second baseman Chris Burke. This is a bit strange, since we have Edgar Gonzalez, Travis Denker, Matt Antonelli and possibly Luis Rodriguez in the mix for second. But Burke is very versatile. He’s played first, second, shortstop, third, and even outfield. He will probably get a look at shortstop. Maybe he will be platooning with Rodriguez?? We’ll have to see.
Also, this a bit late, but Jim Rice and Rickey Henderson got elected to the Hall of Fame on Monday. I wasn’t around during their careers, but from what I’ve heard, they both deserve it. Henderson did play with the Padres for a few years, and he seems like quite the character. Congratulations to both of these guys!
Just wanted to thank you all for your great response to my tribute to Trevor. I actually wrote that when I first heard that he became a free agent in early November. I am going to find the Brewers’ fan mail address and send Trevor a printout of that page. It’s the least I can do for the all-time saves leader.
On Wednesday, the day before Trevor Hoffman signed with the Milwaukee Brewers, the Padres’ front office spoke.
“We just don’t have the money.”
Those wise words came from the mouth of Padres’ General Manager Kevin Towers.
“We just don’t have the money.”
That is pretty true. We have a $40 million payroll, one that will probably be slashed again next year. We have two players taking up half of it. We barely have enough for good players, as we sign minor league free agents and veterans that are way past their prime.
“We just don’t have the money.”
OK, I understand that. A lot of us today “just don’t have the money”. This economic situation is wearing on all of us. It’s really hurting baseball, too (well, except the Yankees). But in these times especially, people sometimes just need to scrape up that money to go enjoy some baseball. To get their mind off of things. To enjoy America’s pastime.
Living in San Diego is not easy. It’s not the cheapest place on the earth. And our sport teams have a lot of problems. How many years has in been since the Chargers have been in the Superbowl? How long will it be until the Padres get into another World Series? Will even our college teams go anywhere?
When you’ve had a legend like Trevor Hoffman in San Diego for so long, people come out to see him. People come out to experience Trevor Time, to hear “Hell’s Bells” ringing through the stadium as the all-time saves leader runs out from the bullpen. He’s made a legacy here. He is San Diego.
So I ask you, Padres’ front office, why Trevor?
When you look at Trevor, don’t you see the impact he’s made in San Diego? Do you not see the crowd at Petco when the bells start ringing? Do you not hear the immence cheering when that man trots out of the bullpen? Do you not see the changeups, still fooling batters even after all these years? Do you not see that man in the clubhouse, being a leader while goofing off? Can you not hear his subdued voice, taking any blame there needs to be taken for a blown save? Do you see him in the clubhouse after a great save, looking for praise? Can’t you see that he’s hanging out in the trainer’s room or the cafeteria, waiting for the reporters to leave? Is he disrespectful to other players, to other people on the field? Are you blind?
So I ask you again: Why Trevor?
You say it was him or Brian Giles. When Trevor didn’t get back to you on that pathetic $4 million contract, you had to decide. Would you pick up Giles’ option, or would you save the closer? We didn’t need Giles. We could have let him become a free agent. Jody Gerut would have been fine in right field. Giles is taking up $9 million right now. You know that Trevor would have taken a little less than that. We could have offered him a better contract. But no. For some stupid reason, you decided to go with the aging right fielder who is being accused of abuse right now. He might be a great leader in the clubhouse! But Trevor would have been so much better. You know that.
Why? We could have made room for him. He deserves a spot here. He belongs in San Diego. He’s been here for so long. It just doesn’t make sense that you can let him walk away. But you did. And the Padres fans are not happy, Bob. NOT HAPPY.
We’ve been putting up with a lot from you guys over the years. We’ve been putting up with lot this offseason! We don’t like it, and though you say that you are thinking of us, it’s obvious that you’re not. Why should you care what the fans think? We can’t do much about it. Maybe you should start taking a collection at the games. Lock all the doors and don’t let the fans leave until they donate to your cause. We’re already sacrificing so much just to go to a game. Why not make it worse?
I can’t believe you let Trevor Hoffman walk out of here. You are going to regret it. Just watch, he is going to have an incredible season with the Brewers, with a front office who loves him and treats him with the utmost respect. He’s going to get 40+ saves, make a big impact on that Milwaukee club. He’s going into the Hall of Fame as a Padre though, no matter what.
You say you wanted him. But you didn’t even try. We could have saved him. But you “just don’t have the money”.
It looks like Trevor is very close to signing with the Brewers. I am pretty relieved. I would be so upset if he signed with the Dodgers. Well, Trevor wants to get 600 saves. I think he will be able to do that in TWO years. So maybe the Brewers are offering a better option for 2010. I just hope that deal gets done and over. That way I can finally come to terms with the fact that he’s gone. You know, it’s not so much that we’re losing an incredible players, but the thing that really bothers me is the way he left. It was shameful to the organization in way that they took care of this. Pathetic. Now I must share this quote and then rip my front office: “We’re not getting into a bidding war with anybody over Trevor,” Moores said. “It’ll be strange to see him in another uniform, especially for me. But it’s rare that any player spends his whole career with one organization anymore. I hope he has a great year.” Imagine that quote in an extremely sarcastic tone. They won’t even TRY to get Trevor. They won’t make their fans feel better in the fact that their team tried their hardest. No, the Padres never wanted Trevor back at all. They just lazily flopped a pathetic $4 million contract on the table, knowing that he won’t accept that disgrace. They let him walk away. They wouldn’t meet with him, wouldn’t talk to him about why they did it. They kicked him out the door with no good-byes. Look back at the quote. Let me rephrase it: “We don’t want Trevor. It might be weird to see him in another uniform, but that’s what we wanted all along. Maybe he’ll get 40 saves and win a World Series.” Wow, what a pathetic quote. What a pathetic front office! Anyways, Trevor will get signed today. Hopefully by the Brewers. I will be pretty sad…
I just wanted to point y’alls over to Tommy‘s blog to read the interview I did for him. It was a lot of fun to do, and the end result is pretty cool. Head over there and show him some love…http://rockymountainway.mlblogs.com/archives/2009/01/timeout_at_the_plate_2.html
The other thing I wanted to mention was that Trevor Hoffman is about to get signed by either the Dodgers or the Brewers. I am really leaning towards the Brewers, becaue it would be just sad for him to go to the Dodgers. Apparently, Trevor wants to get to 600 saves. I didn’t even know that! Anyways, the deal’s going to be done within the next 48 hours. I’m pretty sad, but I think I will get over it eventually. I just don’t want to think about it right now. I wish he could have finished his career here in San Diego, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. I was watching a video of Trevor Time over at Happy’s blog and I just broke down. It’s going to be so crazy without him here! But it would be terrible if he signed with the Dodgers! Please, Trevor, please don’t sign with the Dodgers. Sign with the Brewers for the sake of all your Padres fans!!
The playoffs have started. Talk about domination. As of right now, 3 teams have won 2 games and 3 teams have won none. But in baseball, things can turn around in a moment. Here’s what’s happened so far.
BOSTON RED SOX vs. LOS ANGELES ANGELS OF ANAHIEM: The Red Sox are my second favorite team in the Majors, so I am really excited about this series. So far, Boston has done really well. In game 1, pitcher Jon Lester dominated for 7 innings, allowing only 1 unearned run. Jason Bay hit a huge 2-run bomb. They got two critical insurance runs in the top of the 9th. Jonathan Paplebon closed it out. In game 2, Jason Bay hit another homer, this time a 3-runner. But the Angels fought back, and going into the top of the 9th, it was a 5-5 tie. But J.D. Drew hit a 2-run homer to break the tie. Paplebon got the save. Another key player in this series so far is Justin Masterson. He’s thrown two good innings, surviving some jams. Tomorrow Josh Beckett is pitching, so I really like the Sox’s chances.
TAMPA BAY RAYS vs. CHICAGO WHITE SOX: This Rays team has just amazed me. They’ve been so good all year, and they’ve been able to continue that in the playoffs. Evan Longoria, the amazing rookie, had 3 hits in game 1, 2 homers and an RBI single. Though the Rays got down 3-1, they were able to come back and win 6-4. There were some incidents like a guy not keeping track of the count, but it was overall a pretty good game. In game 2, the White Sox got two quick runs in the first. But Rays starting pitcher Scott Kazmir settled down and had a good outing. The Ray’s offense was highlighted by Akinori Iwamura’s 2-run homer. They won 6-2. They play game 3 tomorrow. I can’t wait to see what else Tampa Bay can do!
LOS ANGELES DODGERS vs. CHICAGO CUBS: In game 1, the Dodgers offense was homers. James Loney hit a grand slam, and Russel Martin and Manny Ramirez added solo homers. They win 7-2. In game 2, the Cubs made 5 errors and the Dodgers capitalized. Russel Martin had a 3-run double. Dodgers win 10-3. They could win the series tonight. I feel bad for the Cubs fans. It appears that the drought will continue, but we’ll see.
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES vs. MILWAUKEE BREWERS: In game one, Cole Hamels of the Phillies threw an 8-inning gem. His offense game him three runs in the first. Brewers’ Mike Cameron dropped a fly ball that allowed 2 runs to score. Some more sloppy defense by the Brewers gave the Phillies one more run. The Brewers’ only chance, really, was against the Phillies’ closer Brad Lidge. But he closed the game to give the Phils a 3-1 win. In game 2, Shane Victorino got a grand slam. Brad Lidge closed the 5-2 win. So now the Phillies, too, have a chance to win their series. Jamie Moyer is pitching for them tonight.
So, the playoffs have certainly been interesting so far. Hopefully a few if not all the leading teams can move on in the next few days.