San Diego has lost 22 of 34 since August 25th, when they had a six and a half game lead on the Giants. So it’s not like we should weep for them or anything, as their wounds are self-inflicted. But it is a bit sad that such an unexpectedly good season from them is most likely going to end on Sunday rather than extend into postseason land.
And “most likely” is the key phrase here. The playoff math, such as it is, breaks down thusly:
- The Padres could still win the division. How? By sweeping the Giants this weekend and beating them in a one-game playoff on Monday down in San Diego (this weekend’s series is in San Francisco);
- If the Padres sweep and if the Braves
lose all three of their games against the Phillies, no Padres-Giants playoff will be necessary. Why? Because, if both the
Padres and the Giants are assured of a playoff spot they’ll be co-NL West champs, the Padres will be
seeded as the champ in the playoffs and the Giants will be seeded as the wild card. The seeding is
by virtue of the Padres winning the season series from the Giants;
- The Braves playoff magic number is two, so any combination of Braves
wins and Padres losses that add up to two eliminates the Padres from
wild card contention. This could happen as early as tonight.
- If the Padres win two of three from the Giants and the Braves get swept, the Padres and Braves will play game 163 in Atlanta on Monday. Which, even if I don’t want that to happen because of my rooting interests, would be fairly awesome for baseball in general.
I think that covers it all (this involves simple math, and even simple math is a challenge for me). Basically, though, the Padres have to win all three games or they’re probably SOL.
And yes, if you think that part of the reason I wrote this post was so that I can use another pic of the Padres in their 1984 throwbacks from yesterday, you are absolutely right.
Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun had three more years of arbitration eligibility left, but he and the Angels decided to settle that future business at once on Wednesday, agreeing to a three-year extension worth $26 million, per SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. The contract also includes a $14 million club option for the 2020 season.
Calhoun, 29, has been a dependable right fielder for the Angels over the last three seasons, batting an aggregate .266/.327/.436 with 61 home runs and 216 RBI in 1,895 plate appearances. According to FanGraphs, Calhoun has been the ninth-most valuable right fielder in baseball since the start of the 2014 season with 11.4 Wins Above Replacement. He ranks slightly behind Giancarlo Stanton (11.9) and just ahead of J.D. Martinez (10.9).
The Angels only have a handful of players signed beyond the 2017 season — just Albert Pujols, Mike Trout, Andrelton Simmons, and Calhoun. The club has options on Ricky Nolasco and Huston Street, while many others will be eligible for arbitration.
Nothing is happening as the baseball world waits four more hours for the Hall of Fame announcement. Question: why do it at 6pm? For MLB Network ratings? Let’s be real, there are “Golden Girls” reruns on third-tier basic cable that are gonna draw a bigger audience. Why not announce it now so people can get on with their lives? Oh well.
As we wait, let’s take a look in at Twitter, where Jim Bowden of ESPN passes along the rumor that the Washington Nationals are still interested in signing Matt Wieters and Greg Holland:
Great to know that the Nats’ baseball operations budget is dictated by its capital expenditures. Maybe they shoulda been smart like the Braves and suckered — er, I mean negotiated the local government to pay more for it? GO BRAVES!
Anyway, Bryce Harper had a response to that:
I take that to mean that he’d take the money used to construct the team store and give to Wieters and Holland. I haven’t seen the budget breakdown for the new spring training facility, but that would probably mean a major pay cut for Wieters and Holland. And where would we buy our “Make Baseball Great Again” caps? Think ahead, Bryce. Play the long game here.