Padres History: Chase Headley’s monster 2012 season

(Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
(Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images) /

Drafted in the second round of the 2005 MLB Draft, few predicted that Padres’ Chase Headley would have a huge 2012 season.

As a standout baseball star at the University of Tennessee, the Padres took Chase Headley with their second-round pick. This MLB draft class was top-heavy with names like Justin Upton, Alex Gordon, Ryan Zimmerman, Ryan Braun, and Troy Tulowitzki.

However, getting a guy like Headley in the second round was terrific value. He ascended quickly through the farm system, hitting .330 in 121 games at Double-A and was promoted directly to the big leagues for eight games in the 2007 season.

Headley began the following year at Triple-A, and after batting .305 in 65 games, he was promoted for regular playing time. In 91 games, he posted a .269/.337/.420 line with nine home runs and 38 RBI.

The following year, he hit 12 home runs. The next, 11. The next, just four.

Which is why it was so remarkable that Headley broke out the way he did in 2012, smacking 31 home runs and an NL-leading 115 RBI. Surprisingly, he did not garner All-Star attention, partly because he had just eight home runs and a .267 batting average at the break.

He was locked in during the second half of the year, smacking 23 bombs while driving in 73 runs and hitting .308. His two best games of the second half both came on the road.

In a losing effort at Coors Field, Headley hit a two-run blast in the top half of the first inning, his 23rd of the year. He would drive in four more runs and end the day with seven total bases.

The other outstanding performance came on August 10 at PNC Park. Headley hit two bombs, a two-run and three-run blast in the fifth and seventh innings, respectively. He finished the day with eight total bases.

Of all third basemen, Aramis Ramirez of the Chicago Cubs was the closest to matching Headley’s production in the second half, with 17 home runs and 53 RBI, both still a distant way from the Padres’ third baseman.

Next. Machado trending “downwards” in third basemen rankings. dark

That season put Headley on the map as a premier hitter in the National League, but after hitting 13 home runs in 2013, the Padres traded him to the Yankees at the deadline in 2014. He had a decent career resurgence in 2017, smacking 14 home runs and driving in 51 runs, but nothing could touch his 2012 season.