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”.
So, the latest news is that the Padres didn’t even offer arbitration to Trevor Hoffman, baseball’s all-time saves leader and 15-year Padre. It’s pathetic. Now, I don’t really understand arbitration too well. But I guess if the Padres had offered it to him and he signed with another team, we would get more prospects in the draft or something. If they had offered it and he accepted, he would have been with the Padres, and had a higher salary. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s basically my grasp of it. All I know is, it means that the Padres don’t want Trevor, and the Padres won’t even try to get some picks for him. It’s making me go crazy. I mean, there’s a total lack of communication on both side. Trevor says the front office hasn’t contacted him. Sandy Alderson says they have. There is almost no possible way that Trev could come back. But I haven’t let it hit me yet. Not until he signs with another team and is truly gone. So, I guess I’m still holding out even though it is SO unlikely, “99-to-1”, Trevor says.
On the Jake side, Atlanta just got a new starting pitcher. That means that they might not need Jake. But the Cubs seem like the more likely club to get him though, probably with another team. But why would Jake want to pitch for the Cubs? The Winter Meetings are coming up. Jake’s probably going to be traded then. It is sad.
But you know, there is some hope for the season ahead. There was a mention of outfielder Scott Hairston in the latest Padres article. Even if you didn’t follow the Padres last year, you might have heard of the guy. Our outfield situation was shaky all year. Jim Edmonds was a flop, and when we finally got rid of him, we replaced him with Jody Gerut. The Padres had seen him tearing it up in winter ball. He had not played baseball for 2 years because of surgery on both knees. But he deserved to be with us all year, and he was great. He played most of the time in center. Right field was patrolled by Brian Giles. But in left, we had rookie Chase Headley. Chase first learned how to play left in January 2008. He was our everyday left fielder by June. But our backup outfielder, Scott Hairston, was a huge part of this team. In 2007, we got him in a great trade with the Diamondbacks. Bad move on Arizona’s side. They did win the division, but it would have been easier if they hadn’t traded Scotty to us. He hit 2 or 3 amazing walk-off homers, and was solid in the outfield. He was the one who got that 2-run homer in the top of the thirteenth during game 163. And this year, when he finally got a chance to play, he got so hot, it was unbelievable. He just would not stop. He also had another walk-off for us. Plus, he’s a superb outfielder. So, anyways, the story was saying that he will probably have a higher salary and stuff. And it was really exciting because this guy is an amazing player and a great guy. I love having him on this team. Plus, it will be so exciting to watch rookie catcher Nick Hundley. If we can get a veteran backup catcher for him, he will be great.
So there is a little excitement for this season. Even if we go into it without our ace and our star closer but having a ruthless uncaring rude pathetic front office, we will still get to watch all these exciting young guys. Besides, it’s baseball. And I think we’re all starving for that right now, aren’t we?
Things have slowed down over the weekend. On Friday, the Braves announced that they are out of the Peavy race. That’s a relief. But now the talk is the Angels or Yankees. Now, Jake wants to stay in the NL, but he would probably approve a trade to the Angels because it isn’t that far from San Diego. He would probably go to the Yankees because he wants a championship. Jake wants to go to a winning team, but he might not approve a trade if they give up essential players for him. This is just a ridiculous example, but if the Yankees traded A-Rod to the Padres for Jake, Jake wouldn’t want to go because he feels that A-Rod is essential to the Yankees winning. He might not have approved the trade to the Braves anyway because he wanted a solid shortstop like Yunel Escobar behind him. Now, Jake does want to stay in the NL. My theory? He wants to keep his ABs. If he goes to the AL, he won’t get to bat anymore. Last year, Jake was hoping to have a higher batting average than ERA. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out (2.85 ERA to .265 batting average). Oh, well. But he had 13 hits on the season, including 2 doubles. He also hit a homer in Spring Training. He loves to hit, and he can be a threat at the plate. So, in the NL, the Cubs are interested. But they don’t have good pieces to send us. It is most likely that Jake will get traded, but I so wish he would just stay here.
Things on the Trevor side are not good. Trev came out and actually spoke to the press on Friday. Here’s another sad thing involving the front office: Trevor and a bunch of players were vacationing in Puerto Rico. The front office called him on vacation and told him over the phone that the deal was off the table. HOW PATHETIC IS THAT???? Trevor talked a lot about everything that’s been going on. Everything he said, the front office said the exact opposite. Trevor thinks there’s no possible way he could be coming back to San Diego. Sandy Alderson? Oh, sure, he could still be coming back. They are not on the same page. Trevor is going to walk out the door. And the front office won’t even care.
Man, I hate the offseason. Now it looks like the Jake deal isn’t very close to getting done. OKKKK, I thought we just heard that he was really close to being traded. No? Oh, must have been an error there for some poor reporter. So strange. I guess I was feeling a little better because, hey, Jake might well be staying. But I had forgotten the other side of my distress: Trevor. Yeah, and it looks like he is definitely out the door. You know, it will hurt really badly to have Trevor gone and on another team. I’ll be really upset for a while, like mourning a lost friend, but then I’ll eventually be OK with it. Trevor is really like family to San Diego. I don’t know him personally, but like I’ve said before, he IS San Diego. I will definitely miss him. But as long as he isn’t on a rival team, I will still get to watch him pitch through the wonderful world of video. He will still be around. Plus, I will have to become that team’s fan. I might want to become an Indians fan, at least until Trevor retires. Just watch, he’s going to have a 40+ save season and win a World Series. So, I will get over it. I might even enjoy seeing him on another team. But the thing I will not tolerate is the front office. They have handled situations very poorly before, but I think this is the worst. They are the ones who get the blame for letting Trevor walk. They are the ones who will have to watch this team without him. I predict that sometime this season, after the closer for this team blows it big time, they will lie in their beds, restless, thinking about how they let the ALL-TIMES SAVES LEADER walk right out the door. How they offered the ALL-TIMES SAVES LEADER $4 mil after he earned $7.5 mil the year before. They WILL regret this. They will look around the empty Petco Park one night, at the few season ticket holders snoring in their seats as the Padres are losing 45-0. They will say, we should have given Trevor the respect he deserves. We should have lowered tickets prices and maybe the budget, too, even lower. They WILL regret this. The fans are not happy. We don’t like losing our best players. But we are, unfortunately, used to it. So, sometime in the next few weeks, Trevor will probably be picked up by another team. Jake still might get traded, though things have slowed considerably on that front. And we only have one place to blame: the front office.
I think I understand the front office’s problem: the lack of communication. I listened to a 25-minute interview with CEO Sandy Alderson yesterday. Utterly pathetic. I was glad that he came on. He even came in studio. But he was obviously hesitant, uncomfortable, and he dodged a lot of the questions. Gotta give credit to the XX 1090 guys, they were really going at him with all the questions the fans have been asking. One of the things that really stuck out to me was the lack of communication. On a lot of the questions, Sandy made excuses by saying, oh, I haven’t talked to (owner) John Moores about that, I don’t know if (GM) Kevin Towers was planning this, and worst of all, he hasn’t even talked to Trevor during this whole thing!! Outrageous. But he did admit that he was the one who took the deal off the table. The other thing that I noticed was that he said they really do think about the fans. Contrary to what we all think, the Padres front office really does put a lot if consideration to the fans. Though he said it almost exactly like that, I find it extremely hard to believe. They don’t care about us. They can’t. Here’s another strange thing that bugs me: Trevor asked for a meeting with Alderson, Moores, and KT. Trev’s agent said they didn’t get a response. As a result, Trevor is disappointed in the Padres. But KT said that he had left a message on Trev’s phone saying they would be available. Sandy also said that they have been available. Someone is having major problems here, and it’s not Trevor. The front office is losing the confidence of their fans. I wonder how many of us will be left when this is all over.
The news is out today. The Jake deal probably will be done by Thanksgiving. Trev will probably be on another team next year. The front office is ready to give away their two best players. It’s tough. I think I will be OK, but only until it really hits me about what they’re about to do. Oh man. WE’RE ABOUT TO GIVE AWAY JAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, maybe I’m more upset than I thought.
What a lovely way to start the day. I got up my internet and watched my Padres toolbar in horror. The scrolling Padres news moved by: Padres withdraw offer to Hoffman. OUCH. I can’t believe this. Is our front office so dumb as to think that this will help us in some way? Do they not realize that for many fans, this will be the last straw? I have been doubting the front office’s sanity with all this Peavy trade talk, but this is going too far. When reporters talked to GM Kevin Towers, he was as shut up as a frightened turtle. Does this mean you don’t want Trevor back? No comment. Do you still want to see Trevor finish his career as a Padre? No comment. This scares me. It seems as if Trev is definitely done as a Padre. I have stuck by the front office before, but now I’m getting fed up. The whole Moores situation is UGLY. He needs to sell his part of the team and get out of here. Towers has done good things before, but he’s the owner’s puppet. Maybe the problem isn’t the men on the field. Maybe it’s the insane people in the front office. Say we lose Trevor. Then they trade Jake. Then the front office wants to get rid of Greenie so bad that they sent him out for a few pathetic prospects. On my goodness I am FED UP. This is getting so ridiculous. We need new leadership. Poor Bud Black. He has the potential to guide a team deep into the postseason, but the front office isn’t giving him the pieces. They give him guys like Jim Edmonds and Randy Wolf. PATHETIC! This is soooo sick. Now that it seems like the Padres have dumped Trevor, what are we going to do? What if he gets picked up by a team in the NL West? I really hope that the Padres will be better next year, but it looks very unlikely. We are not going to get better until we get new leadership. It’s time for a rebuilding season, but not on the field. We need a new front office. I am so sick of this.