As expected, the San Diego Padres are projected to finish in last place in the NL West by every major prognosticator.
Let’s be honest, no one is expecting this San Diego Padres’ team to break out in 2018. There are a lot of questions regarding the starting rotation, and the starting lineup is full of young players still trying to define their identity.
The farm system, however, brings hope to fans. We’ll get to see the first wave of this elite class of prospects in spring. Fernando Tatis, Jr., Luis Urias, Joey Lucchesi, Eric Lauer, Cal Quantrill, and others will provide a lot of excitement throughout the long spring training season. Unfortunately, none of these prospects will contribute at a high level in 2018.
This leaves us with a familiar San Diego Padres team from 2017. The only additions to the starting lineup are SS Fredy Galvis and 3B Chase Headley. While they are good ballplayers, they are not all-stars. Last year’s Opening Day starter, Jhoulys Chacin, is gone, while guys like Tyson Ross and Chris Young will now compete for the final spot in the rotation.
FanGraphs and USA Today project the Padres to finish at 71-91, last place in the NL West. The Diamondbacks, Dodgers, and Rockies all made the playoffs last year and have the pieces in place to do it again. The Giants finished seven games behind the Padres, but have added Evan Longoria and Andrew McCutchen to their lineup. The last place projection is realistic for 2018.
Baseball Prospectus is the latest publication to release their 2018 projections. Their PECOTA projections have the Padres finishing at 73-89, five games behind the Rockies for last place in the division.
PECOTA also projects San Diego to finish dead last in MLB in: team batting average (.236), runs scored (664), OBP (.293, only team under .300), and slugging percentage (.379).