Sep 17, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; San Diego Padres first baseman Tommy Medica (54) takes a wide throw at first base against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the fourth inning at PNC Park. The San Diego Padres won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Tommy Medica had the second most innings played at first base for the Padres in 2014. Thinking back on Medica’s 2014 campaign, I remember his clutch hits late in the season. I feel like those big moments blinded me and convinced me that Medica had improved. In reality Medica hit just .237/.297/.407 at the end of the season, which isn’t much better than his .227/.268/.412 first half.
Most notably before and after the break, he was worse than Alonso. The numbers aren’t too far apart, but it’s comparing a healthy Medica to an injured Alonso; whose track record suggests that he’s a better player than he showed in 2014. That might make it very difficult for Medica to even get a look to make the big league roster. There’s a lot of outfield depth that are ahead of him on the pecking order and without a way to claim the starting first base job out of camp, we’ll likely see Medica start 2015 in El Paso. That’ll make it tough for him to ever get any looks at first.
Another big issue with Medica is that he bats right handed. The current Padres lineup is in severe need of lefties to balance it out. First base is one of the few positions where the Padres don’t have someone locked in as a starter, so it’s a perfect place to get that balance.