San Diego Padres reason not to give up on 2023 season: The 2011 St. Louis Cardinals
Anything is possible. Yes, it really is. An 11.5 deficit in the NL West is a lot and an 8-game deficit in the Wild Card is even bigger considering the number of teams they have to jump over. One lengthy winning streak, however, can change all of that.
For motivation, the Padres have to look no further than the 2011 St. Louis Cardinals. From mid-to-late June that season, the Redbirds went 3-12 and the playoffs seemed out of reach. On the Fourth of July, they turned their season around, and they slowly crept back into the race before going 23-9 over the final 32 games, erasing a 10.5 deficit in the standings and completing the largest comeback to clinch a postseason berth after playing 130 games.
San Diego still has a month to figure out what they are going to do at the trade deadline, but Preller can go out and upgrade his roster if needed. If not, there is plenty of talent on his roster that can go on a lengthy winning streak. Who knows, maybe a streak like the 2011 Cardinals to get into the race is in their future.
The Padres have the benefit of an upcoming schedule that features a home series before the All-Star Break against the equally underachieving New York Mets and series still on the schedule with the Detroit Tigers, and Chicago White Sox, and still two series with the Colorado Rockies. One long streak can change the narrative in a 162-game season.
It is easy to see both sides of things, giving up on 2023 and looking ahead to 2024 and still having hope this season. San Diego needs to show more urgency and start stringing wins together and as unlikely as it sounds now, you just never know