As Friars On Base reported earlier this afternoon, Mike Dee, CEO of the San Diego Padres stated that the organization is extremely unhappy with what ownership is seeing on the field in 2014 in terms of the constant lack of offense. Dee went on to say that changes are coming if an obvious turnaround doesn’t occur soon.
Making matters worse, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is now reporting that Ron Fowler, executive chairman of the team, stated Thursday night that “changes could be imminent for his struggling franchise.” Fowler added “At this time, we will not be discussing our situation with any parties outside of our senior management circle.”
When two major players at the top of the organizations start talking changes, it’s not a matter of if, but when. Who will get the ax? Bud Black? Phil Plantier? Josh Byrnes? All of them? The hitting coach Plantier would be an obvious target, but as the old adage goes: he’s not the one in the batter’s box not getting it done. Someone has to fall, and if ownership is going to give Black and Byrnes until the end of the season before making changes, then more than likely Plantier is done.
“That said, we are terribly disappointed in the team’s offense this year and staying the course (waiting for a turnaround) is becoming less appealing as the ugly losses continue.”
~Ron Fowler, Executive Chairman
Friars On Base has already examined the reasons why Bud Black and Josh Byrnes should go now. The team is currently last in the majors hitting-wise, with a .216 batting average, .275 OBP, and is only slugging .344. Not only could management and coaches be on the way out, but several players could be dealt if ownership determines the 2014 to be a lost cause. Players such as Huston Street, Seth Smith, Ian Kennedy, Chris Denorfia, Chase Headley, and Carlos Quentin could all fetch some pieces back to help in a complete roster overhaul if that is the direction the team chooses to go.
The term “Keep the Faith” has been used throughout the season by Padres’ fans. With a payroll north of $90 million dollars, finishing last in the NL West wasn’t going to be acceptable, no matter how laid back and relaxed the City of San Diego, or the Padres’ ownership appears to be.