The Filibuster

On Thursday, the initial sale of the San Diego Padres to new owner Jeff
Moorad was completed.  Knowing that it only took Sandy Alderson and his
equally ignorant chum, Kevin Towers, a few years to extensively
decimate the Padres franchise like Chris Brown did Rihanna’s face, how
long will it take Moorad to get the Padres competitive again?

— Jeff


padres.jpgHave you already forgotten about that epic tie-breaker two short seasons ago when the Rockies edged the Padres on their way to a World Series appearance? The fact that San Diego was so close to the playoffs kind of puts the lie to your question and its entire premise. Yes, the Padres should have been more competitive recently and poor decisions were made (which are explained much more eloquently by the Prince of New York over at but we’re not talking about the Knicks under Isiah Thomas here. This is not a team that’s lost for a generation.

It does kind of make you wonder what baseball executives get paid to do, though. Prince’s hatred of Alderson and Towers and your open contempt for Mozeliak in St. Louis remind me of some of Bill Simmons’ old columns where he rants about the management of the Celtics. However, once they won a championship the volume became a little muted. So, are sports executives really that incompetent or are other forces at work here?

I suppose that like any story, there are two sides to this one. I’m sure most GMs would argue that it’s tough to judge their success on winning alone since a large part of that depends on the human element, the players. And meanwhile the fans wonder why their team is going out and signing a guy like Dontrelle Willis to an extension while letting Cameron Maybin get away. And both sides are probably right. For all the statistics and sabrmetrics that exist today, this, like economics, is not an exact science:

But, to get back to your question, I don’t know when the Padres will be competitive again. It depends on a lot of factors in addition to just the current management team. It depends on resolving the Peavy situation and like a lot of things nowadays, it probably depends in part on the economy. What I do know, though, is that at least the Padres haven’t yet p!ssed off god. Seriously, what is the deal in Detroit?


-Video from Comedy Central via The Daily Dish.


  1. Erin Kathleen

    Is there any baseball fan (or sports fan in general, I guess), who actually likes their front office? Even if they’re actually doing a pretty good job? I’m not saying that this is the case where Alderson and Towers are concerned, but you’re right. The Padres aren’t sunk for generations to come. They do play in the NL West, after all.

  2. Kaybee

    Yeah, I think most people forget that we were right there in 2007 after winning two straight titles. We were good! But then 2008 was really bad. I don’t know how long it will take for us to get better, but I think Moorad will make us better. He’s done great things for Arizona, and I think he can do the same for the Padres. We will get better…eventually.

  3. PAUL

    Erin, I have no personal animosity toward the Mets front office; Omar Minaya is a guy who it’s impossible NOT to like no matter what he does.
    Allen, excellent point regarding the duality of points-of-view and about the gamble taken when signing a player—-any player—-to a long term contract. The Padres situation is like a series of trapdoors; they blew their playoff spot in 2007 because of Bud Black’s inexperience and glaring late-season gaffes as a manager, and he was only the Padres manager because Alderson ran Bruce Bochy off since he didn’t want to pay him and Bochy had his own ideas of how to run his team.
    `I only hate Alderson/DePodesta, et al. as much as Michael Corleone hated Hyman Roth or Fredo; it’s not personal; it’s strictly business.

  4. Jane Heller

    I like it, Jeff. DePodesta is Prince’s evil twin! As for the Padres, I wouldn’t write them off. Not in that division. Opening Day in Detroit is Good Friday? I’m sure there’s a ball game on Passover too. What about the Jews!

  5. allenk

    Paul, excellent points. And I enjoyed reading your posts about the Padres’ management and ownership. It seems like one of the issues to me is that management is the public face of a franchise and they tend to take much of the scorn. Often, the ownership is just as at fault. For instance, Matt Millen was a terrible GM but it’s almost worse that the Ford’s let him stay in that position for so long. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.”
    I think you have it right, though. It’s not personal, it’s business. But bad business can make things really personal.

  6. PAUL

    I’m the evil one; he’s just inept.
    Jane, you can write them off. Trust me.
    Actually, I’ve long suspected that my grandfather was involved in some under the table stuff but no one’s confirmed it. He was a pool hall owner in the 20s and knew all the big time Jew gangsters, Meyer Lansky, Dutch Schultz, etc.

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