No Padre has ever hit for a cycle, but as far as interesting achievements go, they've done much better.
Carlos Quentin was playing just his second game of the season on Tuesday afternoon, in the Padres’ eventual loss to the Cubs. He doubled in the second inning, homered in the fifth, and singled in the seventh, which meant that television and radio announcers were legally bound to declare that Quentin was “a triple short of the cycle.” It’s a phrase that, while true and harmless, also (as has been notedhereindetail) has crazily misleading connotations; a hitter with a single, double and homer is a triple short of the cycle in the same way the guy playing Tevye in the community production of Fiddler on the Roof down the street is a Best Actor Oscar short of being Laurence Olivier.
In this case, though, it wasn’t just the announcers taking note of it. It was mentioned on Twitter, and for a brief period was the lead story on the front-and-center scroll at MLB’s website. That’s because in the extremely unlikely event it did happen (which, of course, it didn’t), it would have been the first time in franchise history that a Padres player had hit for the cycle.
Several overqualified players might be riding the pine while a pricier, less productive veteran hogs their position on Opening Day, but they deserve to be starting.
Every year, major-league teams spend millions on evaluating and acquiring players from outside their organizations, whether they’re amateurs eligible for the draft, professionals in another system, or foreign or domestic free agents available to the highest bidder. Sometimes, though, a potential source of improvement is already in house and in uniform, overlooked in favor of a more experienced or higher-paid player who’s no longer the best man for the job.
Sixteen years ago, Brian Giles was one such player. Giles was blocked by Albert Belle and Manny Ramirez at the outfield corners in Cleveland, but at designated hitter, only an aging Eddie Murray barred his way. The 40-year-old future Hall of Famer had been productive a season before, but by ’96 he was a year away from retirement and had little left. Giles was ready to replace him. At age 25, he was beyond the age at which most promising players get a long major-league look, but he had only a September cup of coffee to show for his two successful seasons in Triple-A.
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A look back at the career of the late-blooming and underrated slugger.
It's been a rough month for childhood favorites of mine, as not only Nomar Garciaparraretired, but Brian Giles, easily the player I was most irrationally obsessed with during the early part of the decade, also called it a career. How many of you have a cat named Brian Giles at your parents' house? Didn't think so. Giles had a very underrated career, one that fell from the spotlight it almost reached upon being traded to San Diego and the park that crushes hitters' dreams. He won't have the counting stats for a Hall of Fame career, but Giles had quite the career.
Bryan looks at the biggest impact call-ups since the strike, and gives you a few names you might not yet know who could have an impact on this year's pennant race.
As June slowly fades into July and the trade deadline inches closer, rumors have begun to fly about which teams are looking for midseason help. When you think of moves that can propel a team into the playoffs, you think "trade." But that's not the only midseason acquistion that can help a contender. When the Milwaukee Brewers called up Yovani Gallardo last week, the first-place Brew Crew added an elite pitcher that PECOTA projected a 3.92 ERA from in 2007--and that was before he left Indianapolis with the minor league strikeout lead (110 in 77.2 innings).
Marc breaks down the Padres' chances as the defending NL West champions try to improve by adding wins on the margins.
The 2006 Padres finished the season with 88 wins-including a gaudy 13-5 record against their rivals, the Los Angeles Dodgers-and this was in a season where Vinny Castilla accumulated ample playing time for a few months, staff ace Jake Peavy was off his rhythm for the first half, and former star outfielder Brian Giles lost his ability to hit for any semblance of power. This is a team that has won the division the past two seasons, even when most analysts did not think that would be the case either year, and this version is more than likely the most talented of the bunch. There are plenty of reasons to harbor hope and faith for the 2007 edition of the Padres.