Hype gets old. Always does.
We’re at that point now.
The Padres 2015 season has finally arrived. All the trades, signings, and the ensuing craze and hoopla has climaxed, culminating back to a single truth:
Winning the offseason doesn’t get you a ring.
The Padres aren’t the only team in Major League Baseball to have undergone a serious overhaul this past offseason. The Cubs, White Sox and Red Sox –to name a few—are primed for big seasons after failing to win more than 73 games in 2014 (the Padres won 77). But that’s not overly surprising considering that those teams are big market clubs with ample coin.
What General Manager A.J. Preller did in reshaping his roster this past offseason was unprecedented, at least in team history, but not necessarily in Major League Baseball.
Just go a few years back and two eerily comparable offseason narratives played out.
The 2012 Marlins and the 2013 Blue Jays revamped their rosters in a sweeping fashion that, on paper, had both teams all but locked for the playoffs. Miami totally fizzled in its inaugural year at the new Marlins Park, winning just 69 games and finishing last in the NL East. Ironically, the next offseason the roster was gutted, highlighted by a blockbuster trade with the Blue Jays, which ultimately set up Toronto for a big year. Seventy-four wins and a fifth place finish in the AL East was all that came to fruition for the Blue Jays.
Lots of hype. No results.
That’s the situation the Padres find themselves in now. Star studded roster, rejuvenated fan base, and expectations at an all-time high (be real, no one thought the ’84 or ’98 Padres were going to the World Series).
“You go into it knowing it’s a long season,” Preller acknowledged at the onset of Spring Training. “There’s going to be a lot of bumps in the road as we go forward. We know it’s going to be a pretty tough road in the National League West.”
The Giants have won three of the last five World Series’ and can never be counted out (odd year or not), and the Dodgers seemingly infinite bank account will pay dividends eventually. Those in the baseball world hold those truths to be self-evident.
“We feel like we have a chance to be competitive with anyone and that’s what we’re looking to do here in the next six months,” Preller said.
No more hype. Time to prove it.
–Andrew Burer (Twitter: @andrewburer)