At the beginning of this season I made a bold prediction. At the time I knew it was bold, quite possibly even a little bit ridiculous. I knew there was a really good chance this prediction was going to be wrong and I would be ridiculed or even worse than that – get negative comments on the interwebs!
You see really what I was trying to do, was settle the nerves of angry Padres fans all over the city. People we’re so enraged we would trade our stud pitcher that getting a great flock of players in return didn’t seem to matter. I was more predicting that we’d win the trade, but got specific when twitter exploded with ire for Volquez becoming a Friar. I knew he’d do better than 2011, but what I didn’t know was how Latos would handle being in a better division and in a hitter’s ballpark. I became so sure I was right that I turned this prediction into a bet, and made it with several people monetarily and twittertarily. I talked it up for several weeks on the Kept Faith podcast. And when my Dad, a native Ohioan and die-hard Reds fan, called and said that he didn’t like this Latos kid – he’s got no control, I felt elated.
So, at the beginning of the season when Latos was getting lit up and walking the whole ballpark I felt like a genius. After about two months when Volquez started returning to the Volquez of 2011, my stomach began to sink into the depths of the Netherlands. Latos was realizing his chances of winning games skyrocketed in Ohio, while the exact opposite was chasing Volquez down the rabbit hole of inconsistency here in San Diego.
Well, I lost the bet.
BUT, DID I?
Yes, I did. I really did lose the bet. In every way possible, I TECHNICALLY lost the bet, however FUNDAMENTALLY I won the bet.
How, you should be asking at this point but probably aren’t, did I win? Because the true intention of the bet was to prove that the Padres came out on top in the Latos deal. I still believe that, and we still did. Losing Latos was not a great thing for Padres fans, but it was a great thing for the Padres. We lost a solid pitcher, who really started to hit his stride with the Friars, but was not going to stay in San Diego and could not have been happier when he left. In return we got three players who had yet to be proven and one player in Volquez looking to bounce back in a pitchers paradise. On paper we came out on top and at the exact same time that trade was exactly what both teams needed: The Reds desperately needed a pitcher they could rely on and the Padres desperately needed everything.
TECHNICALLY I lost the bet, but it wasn’t that lopsided:
Volquez: 11-11/170 K’s/102 BB/4.16 ERA/1.43 WHIP
Latos: 13-4/178 K’s/62 BB/3.60 ERA/1.19 WHIP
A good amount of the lopsided wins can be attributed to the fact that Latos is pitching for a powerful offense and on a team already favored in their division. The strikeouts are close, the ERA’s aren’t that different all things considered, but the walks and WHIP are pretty far apart. That’s where you can really see the difference and a lot of those walks translates into a higher ERA and lower win total. So, Latos had (is having) a better year and I was wrong. Although, Volquez is also having a better year and getting to be a mentor to younger guys while also being able to settle in to his digs.
FUNDAMENTALLY I won the bet:
The Reds have dominated the Central and owe a lot of that dominance to Latos’ right arm. HOWEVER, The Padres made a second half surge thanks to Yonder Alonso’s maturation, Yasmani Grandal’s rookie energy and great numbers and Edinson Volquez’s resurgence. Not to mention Boxberger is coming along nicely. We got a core of players in return for a pitcher who had no intention or interest of being in any longterm situation in San Diego. Just follow his wife’s twitter account (@DallasLatos) to see how much interest they have in anybody but themselves. By the way, it’s weird that his wife and I share the same first name, and honestly she does Dallas’ everywhere a huge disservice. Yes, she’s attractive, but in that dirty ‘Jersey Shore’ kind of way. The guys who follow her on twitter are just waiting for her divorce so they can DM her in the hopes of her making another mistake.
(Stepping off twitter soapbox now…)
Fans and sports professionals alike took notice of the impact this trade was having on the Padres in the second half of 2012, and like myself only see it being more beneficial as the years roll along. We now have four players who should be Padres for years to come, playing their hearts out and hoping to lead their team to the postseason sooner rather than later.
So, fundamentally I won the bet, because we all won the bet. But, technically I lost that bet, and I would like to say publicly I was wrong. For now. Just wait. Reds V. Padres for the NL Pennant 2013! I probably just jinxed that.
For more Padres stuff and other things you might not care about follow me on Twitter @dallas_mc