Monday, June 18, 2012


When the experts look at the Padres, what do they see? 

A collection of awful players, you might think based on the team's 24-43 record.

While the Padres certainly have dabbled in awful in this year, even rolled gallons of awful on ballfields throughout this beautiful country, one National League scout saw a lot of the Padres this month, and he wasn't shrieking in pain afterward.

The man seemed bored, not tormented. Maybe he needed an espresso or a shot of 5-hour ENERGY.

Whatever it was, the Padres weren't giving him a jolt.

He didn't mention Carlos Quentin, which may be why he sounded like he'd just watched an entire C-Span series about legislative procedures.

If the report on the Padres he filed was like his chat with me, the thumbnail version would read: Zzzzzzz.

"Overall, it's tough to get excited about their future given their current 25-man roster," he said. "Generally speaking, I don't see any above-average position players on the field."

His scouting breakdown: "Lots of marginal batspeed and minimal power hitters."

The scout talked about several everyday players on the Padres.

Then he mentioned Logan Forsythe.

"Forsythe might be the most interesting of the group," he said. "He controls the strikezone. I like his swing, and he can drive the ball. I'm not sure where he ends up, but he could be a decent everyday second baseman or third baseman."

If Forsythe's swing impresses a scout, that's an encouraging development. For years several of these sharp-eyed men had hedged on the infielder, citing a pesky swing flaw. Against most minor league pitchers, the flaw wasn't a problem. Against big leaguers, the "barrel tip" would get exposed, scouts had told This Blog, and that was before Forsythe reached the majors last year and batted .213 in 150 at-bats, with no home runs.

The 25-year-old got a late start to this season because he needed foot surgery. In 10 games, he's batted .290 with a home run, two triples and a double. Sure, 181 career at-bats qualify only as a cup of coffee. But at least it's caffeinated coffee, which is what Padres watchers may require.

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