Earlier this season general manager Jed Hoyer tried to deflect criticism aimed at hitting coach Randy Ready for the Padres’ offensive struggles, but today the team fired Ready after 2.5 seasons on the job.
San Diego scored the second-fewest runs in the league, so firing the hitting coach certainly isn’t shocking, but it’s worth noting that Petco Park played a huge role in those weak scoring totals. Away from the majors’ most extreme hitters’ ballpark the Padres scored the NL’s sixth-most road runs.
In other words, when playing in normal, non-extreme hitting environments the Padres’ lineup was slightly above average. When playing at home they were horrendous, but Petco Park turns just about every offense into a punchless one. Which is why in eight seasons calling Petco Park home the Padres have ranked 8th, 13th, 13th, 9th, 16th, 15th, 12th, and 15th among NL teams in overall scoring.
The Astros have released first baseman Jon Singleton, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Singleton, 26, was suspended for 100 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse for a third time. He has had issues with marijuana in the post and admitted to being a drug addict several years ago. He said, “At this point it’s pretty evident to me that I’m a drug addict. I don’t openly tell everyone that, but it’s pretty apparent to myself. I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can’t block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that.”
Singleton played parts of two seasons in the majors in 2014-15 with the Astros, batting a combined .171/.290/.331 with 14 home runs and 50 RBI in — appropriately — 420 plate appearances. He spent 2016 with Triple-A Fresno and 2017 with Double-A Corpus Christi, putting up middling numbers.
If he can convince teams he’s still actively working to overcome his addiction, Singleton may be able to find an opportunity elsewhere. But his road back to the majors remains long. He was once a top prospect in the Phillies’ system, then was traded to the Astros in the Hunter Pence deal back in July 2011.