The San Diego Padres entered the 2019 season with a lot of optimism, as rookie shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. and starter Chris Paddack made the Opening Day roster.
They started the season 11-5, and was in playoff contention for the entirety of the first half of the season, as they went into the All-Star Break with a .500 record.
Chris Paddack was arguably the front runner in the Cy Young and Rookie of the Year race in the first two months of the season but then struggled for the first time in his major league career, which prompted him to be sent down to Single-A Lake Elsinore for a short 10-day stint to rest his arm. Paddack was on an innings limit in 2019, but he finished strong in his final two starts against the Cubs and the Brewers. He finished the year logging 140.2 innings pitched and had a 3.33 ERA.
Although Tatis Jr. suffered a hamstring injury at the end of April, which led to lesser production from the offense, outfielders Franmil Reyes and Hunter Renfroe led the Padres offense in the first half of the season, as they both hit over 20 home runs and Renfroe was the best defensive outfielder in the league in terms of defensive runs saved.
But the team came back to Earth once the second half of the season began.
At the MLB Trade Deadline in July, Padres General Manager A.J. Preller traded fan-favorite Franmil Reyes along with Logan Allen in a three-team trade with the Indians and Reds in an attempt to build for the future. In return, the Padres got back left-handed-hitting outfielder, Taylor Trammell, who has the potential to be a star once he reaches the big leagues.
This trade sent the message to both the fans and the clubhouse that the season was over and the front office was yet again looking towards the future.
Tatis was on the shelf for the rest of the season after a back strain on August 14 that occurred while he took a swing.
Since Tatis’ second injury of the season, the team had no energy and was playing uninspired baseball on a nightly basis, which prompted for Preller to dismiss Andy Green as the manager of the San Diego Padres.
The next manager will have to be able to communicate better on and of the field than Green did. The front office has already made a list of candidates they could see standing on the top step of the dugout come Opening Day in 2020 that include former Padres manager Bruce Bochy, former Angels manager and 2002 World Series champion Mike Scioscia, current Padres assistant Moises Alou, former Rangers skipper Ron Washington, and former Padre and current bench coach of the Cubs, Mark Loretta.
Beyond the dugout, the Padres will also have to improve on the field as well. They will be looking to acquire a frontline starting pitcher like Noah Syndergaard, an offensive first outfielder that is preferably left-handed, and will try to solidify their catching position.
It will be an interesting off-season to pay attention to if you are a Padre fan, and hopefully will lead to the first winning season in 10 years.