Padres Editorial: Are Padres Playoff Hopes Dead?

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Jun 23, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Diego Padres left fielder Justin Upton (10) reacts after striking out against the San Francisco Giants during the fourth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

The San Diego Padres stand at 39-47 after Tuesday night’s loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. They are 8.5 games back of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West and are behind the Chicago Cubs by the same number of games. No team in baseball has played more games against teams that are .500 or better. So, are the Padres hopes of a playoff birth dead or are the 8.5 game deficits surmountable?

The Division

Obviously, between the division and wild card, the division is a tougher mountain to climb. The Friars play seven more games against the Dodgers (four at home). The fact that the Pads are 4-8 against the Dodgers doesn’t exactly give one confidence that L.A. can be surpassed.

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The Dodgers are on pace for 90 wins. The offense seems stable and barring injury should keep pace with the performance thus far in the season. Zack Greinke won’t likely end up with a 1.48 ERA but Clayton Kershaw will likely pitch better in the second half. But will the rest of their rotation stay as good? Brett Anderson and Mike Bolsinger have ERA’s around three. Are they really going to be that good for the rest of the year?

One glimmer of hope in head-to-head matches is the run differential in Padre-Dodger games. Thus far, the Padres have scored 44 runs and the Dodgers 47. The 4-8 head-to-head record does not tell the full story.

Regardless, the Dodgers seem quite stable. Other than a couple pitchers, they have not been over performing and the team shouldn’t suffer the wrath that is regressing to the mean.

To secure a division title, the Padres would have to get at least 91 and likely somewhere closer to 94 wins. That means that they would have to go 55-22 for the rest of the year. What hopes do the Padres have of winning 71-percent of their games?

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