As you know, Huston Street was named as the Padres lone 2012 All-Star selection. Good for him. Good for his family. I thought MLB would’ve picked Headley, or Quentin…and they clearly ignored my recommendations for Chris Denorfia or Yasmani Grandal. They chose Street, who’s been on the DL for a significant chunk of the season and only logged 22 innings. A starter can surpass that in 3 starts. I think Street’s a good closer…he’s had an All-Star-esque career, but he just hasn’t put in enough time on the Padres to merit this selection. It’s not his fault he got picked…it’s Selig’s. This rule has run its course… this isn’t Little League. If your entire team sucks… or your only good players have been sitting on the DL… you don’t get a spot. Pretty simple. If this selection was based on how you look in a speedo… Street 100% deserved the nod.
On to free agents. Of course the Padres won’t be able to pay up for free agents. Their selling points are tired. If I’m in the Padres front office (I expect a call shortly), I’m changing it up. Forget selling the warm weather…the beaches… the ladies. All that stuff is implied. Padres new strategy to nab up free agents? “You may have been mediocre elsewhere, but you’re an All-Star here!”
If Huston Street isn’t a good enough example for you, let’s go back in time. Not too far, so you younger lobsters can remember too. Off the top of your head, who was the Padres All-Star selection in 2003? Tony Gwynn? Nope, he’d already retired. Trevor Hoffman? Nope, even though he was our highest paid player, he sat out the season due to injury and old man Rod Beck was our closer. Brian Giles? Nope, we didn’t get him ’til after the All-Star break in ’03. This roster included Ryan Klesko, Phil Nevin, Mark Kotsay, Mark Loretta, Sean Burroughs, Scott Linebrink, Adam Eaton, Jake Peavy, etc. None of those dudes made the All-Star team though. Rondell White did.
Yup, Rondell White. Remember him? Probably not. Not in a Padres uniform at least. He had a cup of tea with the Padres in 2003 before being traded in August that very same season. With free agency looming in the next year, the Padres traded him for a couple of crappy minor league pitchers. Once they acquired Giles… for Oli Perez and, gulp, Jason Bay…they didn’t need Rondell’s contract on the books. In his defense, in 2003, I do think that Rondell (later listed in the Mitchell Report) deserved to be the Padres All-Star… but the point is, he would NOT have been on any other team. Same goes for Huston Street this year… he’s not an All-Star anywhere else.
I do think that if Huston had played the whole season… he’d have deserved an All-Star nod…same goes for Carlos Quentin. The Padres would have a better record too.
Also, since I know you’re wondering… Rondell White was never an All-Star before or after 2003. In his lone plate appearance as an All-Star, he pinch-hit for Barry Bonds…and grounded into a double play.