1 fantasy that may yet come true for the 2023 San Diego Padres
Ok, so enough about the negatives. Let's keep (some) hope alive for the remainder of the 2023 season for the Padres!
Despite all that's gone wrong this year, San Diego is still alive in the National League Wild Card race. Thanks to an expanded field of six teams in each league, which the Phillies took advantage of last season, all is not lost yet for the Padres in 2023.
We already mentioned that the division looks unlikely, but San Diego sits 7.5 games back in the Wild Card race at the time of this article. This seems like a lot to overcome, until you sit down with the underlying numbers that depict a rosier outlook for the Padres than what you see on the surface.
Firstly, the team's "X-W/L" (expected win-loss) record stands at 42-37, per MLB.com. This is backed by a positive run differential (+26) that should have them ahead of teams like the Phillies and Milwaukee Brewers, who both have negative run differentials.
Therefore, if the Padres were playing up to their "expected" level, they'd be just 2.5 games back of the third and final NL Wild Card spot as of now. Not bad, and certainly far from over.
Of course, it remains to be seen if San Diego finally does kick things into gear, but the potential is at least there for the club the rest of the way.