Rumors circulate that the disappointing (29-33) Padres’ problems are chemical, with cracks in the clubhouse preventing the Padres from reaching their level. But Padres GM AJ Preller vehemently denied that in a phone interview.
“The team loves each other. The chemistry is good,” said Preller, a product of Huntington Station, R.I. “I don’t understand the atmosphere at all.”
Preller said the problem was more obvious.
“I just can’t hit it,” Preller said. “The last two weeks we’ve been playing better, but we just can’t get better.”
Whatever the cause, the Padres have the highest salary outside of the 718 area code of $280.4 million (via Cots), with .699 OPS (23rd), 258 RBI (24th) and a .225 batting average (29 rank) has left a grade of plus 1. .201 BA with RISP (last).
The Padres are still investigating the catcher market. They’re happy with Gary Sanchez (four home runs, nine appearances) and not interested in Tomas Nido or Jorge Alfaro — they’re not signed to the big leagues anyway. …
Carlos Rodon recorded 93 mph and 94 mph touches in the bullpen session. He’s still a few weeks away from his scheduled return, so he’ll have time before he hits his signature 97-plus mph speed. “He looked strong and healthy,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said.
Several scouts said Anthony Volpe’s problem was that he seemed to be trying to loft the ball, and that once he was taught his launch angle, it was difficult to adapt to a level swing at the major league level. Stated. One scout said Volpe (.191) should change what he called “a big man’s swing.” For the record, both scouts still believe in Volpe, despite his slow start at bat. …
The most likely relief pitcher is Aroldis Chapman of the Royals, who has 35 misses and has not allowed a home run.