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The San Diego Padres have been one of baseball’s biggest disappointments through 45 games of the season.
Expectations ran high after San Diego surprisingly committed to one of MLB’s highest payrolls through a flurry of off-season moves.
Xander Bogaerts came in on a massive free agent signing. Yu Darvish, Manny Machado and Jake Cronenworth signed big extensions.
Juan Soto, Josh Hader would spend the first full season with the Padres, with Nelson Cruz and Matt Carpenter providing depth.
Yet as of Saturday afternoon, the Padres are 20-25, 8.5 games behind the first place Los Angeles Dodgers, and one game ahead of the lowly Colorado Rockies.
After the return of Fernando Tatis Jr. a few weeks ago, things appeared to be turning around in San Diego.
The team even began a massive home series against the rival Dodgers with a win over Clayton Kershaw. Partially due to two homers from their all world shortstop.
Clearly feeling confident as the team to beat in the NL West, the Padres put up a doctored image of a crying Kershaw on the scoreboard after the win.
READ: PADRES EMBARRASS THEMSELVES WITH BUSH LEAGUE SCOREBOARD TAUNT AFTER WIN OVER DODGERS
And that’s precisely when the wheels fell off the Padres season.
With that 5-2 win, the Padres ran their record to 18-15, just one game behind LA.
They’ve gone 2-10 since.
Padres Flailing Since Unnecessary Taunt
Since the scoreboard incident, the Padres have been baseball’s worst team. Not one of the worst teams, the worst team.
Even the embarrassing Oakland A’s have gone 3-10 since May 5. The Padres are 2-10.
The next weekend, San Diego went to Dodger Stadium for another important three game series. The Padres were dominated in an easy Dodgers sweep.
Perhaps even more embarrassingly, they then returned home to lose a series to the moribund Kansas City Royals.
The vaunted offense, with Soto, Machado, Tatis and Bogaerts, has scored fewer runs this season than the MLB worst A’s.
And it’s only getting worse.
Manny Machado, 2022 MVP candidate, was hit on the hand recently, with scans revealing a fracture. That’s resulted in his first visit to the injured list in nine seasons.
Five of their next eight games are against the Red Sox or Yankees. Not exactly a recipe for success.
They’ve also seen their playoff odds collapse.
San Diego entered the season as favorites to win the NL West. Yet according to Fangraphs, their division winning odds have fallen to just 10%.
Even their playoff odds, once viewed as a formality, are down to around 50%. Based on season-to-date performance, it’s much lower, just 26%.
The Padres players may not have wanted to put up the crying Kershaw meme. But they have to be frustrated with the unearned confidence displayed by the organization.
Whenever the Padres win another home game against the Dodgers, it’ll be fascinating to see if they’re a little more gracious in victory. Especially considering they’ve had so few of them recently.
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