The San Diego Padres were 60-46 on July 30, the day of the trade deadline.
They were the third-best team in the National League, and in sole possession of the second Wild Card spot.
Several things happened and they started to slide down the standings, and are now a .500 team: 76-74.
One of the favorite preseason picks for surprise MLB team of the offseason will likely not make the playoffs.
3. Recent Injuries
Injuries have really ruined the Padres’ season, but that’s a reality that all 30 teams have to face.
They had to endure several inconsistent months from Blake Snell to start the season, and just when he was starting to right the ship since August, he went down with an adductor injury in September.
Right now, the Padres are 2-7 since Snell went down with the injury.
The Friars have also had to be without top pitcher Mike Clevinger all season long because of Tommy John surgery; and Dinelson Lamet, dealing with elbow issues since last year, has never looked quite right.
Chris Paddack is also on the injured list at the moment with right elbow inflammation: he went down on September 13.
Other crucial contributors are either out for the year or have had to miss significant time with injuries.
2. Inconsistent Pitching
If we go to the numbers, only Joe Musgrove has delivered and matched the huge early-season expectations put on the Padres’ three incoming rotation arms.
Musgrove has a 3.15 ERA in 171.1 innings.
Snell, currently injured, has disappointed, and even though his 4.20 ERA isn’t that bad, it’s not what the Padres had in mind.
He was looking dominant in his last seven games, with a 1.83 ERA, but it came too late, and then he got injured.
The other ace they brought in the offseason, Yu Darvish, hasn’t been the same since MLB started cracking down on the use of substances on the ball by pitchers.
Considering he implied Yelich & the #Brewers hitters cheated a few years ago, I don't think Darvish has taken enough heat publicly for how TERRIBLE he "suddenly" became after the sticky stuff crackdown:
Pre: 2.25 ERA, .593 opp. OPS
Post: 6.23 ERA, .830 opp. OPS
— Tim Muma (@Tim_Muma) September 18, 2021
Overall, Darvish has a 4.13 ERA but has been wildly inconsistent, and this is evidenced by his monthly ERAs: 2.13 in April, 2.20 in May, 3.07 in June, 7.36 in July, 6.32 in August, and 6.41 in September.
MLB started checking pitchers in June.
Paddack has a 5.07 ERA and looks like a two-pitch hurler, not enough to succeed as a starter in MLB.
1. A Mediocre Offense After Tatis Jr.
Fernando Tatis Jr. has battled a sore shoulder all year long to put a .285/.368/.615 line with 39 homers and 26 stolen bases.
After that, however, the Padres don’t have enough punch.
Deadline acquisition Adam Frazier has hit .265/.325/.303 since coming over from the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Manny Machado has been more “good” than “great.”
Jake Cronenworth has also played well.
After that, the Padres have just about average or worse hitters.
Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. have three hits apiece tonight and all four RBIs. The rest of the Padres offense is 2-for-23.
— AJ Cassavell (@AJCassavell) September 12, 2021
Trent Grisham, advertised as a 25-25 candidate with solid on-base skills and elite defense in the outfield, has hit a slightly disappointing .237/.327/.403 with 14 homers and 11 steals.
Yes, he missed time with an injury earlier in the season, but he has not produced and has been especially bad recently, as the Padres have begun to slide.
Grisham, in his last 15 games, is slashing a poor .098/.172/.118, and one has to wonder if he is injured.
The Padres are just 24th in MLB in home runs, with 168.
That’s not going to cut it.NEXT: Looking Back On Some Of Yu Darvish’s Better Seasons