We'll All Flotilla On
Alright. Not even to the start of the Spring Training schedule yet and we're already treated to an update on our old friend Vinny Pads, former all-star and staff ace in Philadelphia, though recent;y departed for muggier pastures in Arlington TX. In the story, "Twenty things to know about Padilla," Rangers fans are already being prepped for his non-communicative style and fussbudget in-game tendencies, including his habit of nodding yes each and every time the catcher lays down a single finger. Some other nuggets are as follows:
9. Padilla was the Diamondbacks Rookie of the Year after posting a 2.31 ERA in 27 relief appearances in 2000.
12. He pitched two scoreless innings in the 2002 All-Star Game but was the last pitcher used by the National League and his stiff back was one of the reasons why the game was called after 11 innings with the score tied at 7.
13. Over the past four years, Padilla has hit 49 batters. Only Victor Zambrano, Jeff Weaver and Kerry Wood have hit more. He hit 50 batters with the Phillies, the third most by a Philadelphia pitcher since 1930.
17. Opponents batted .205 off him with runners in scoring position last year and .238 combined over the past four seasons, 23rd best among Major League pitchers.
19. The Rangers tried to trade for him in the middle of last season with the idea of putting him back in the bullpen. But the Phillies wanted Volquez in return.
Filed under the Zeppelin-like category of "What Is and What Should Never Be," # 19 shows that Ed Wade tried to move Padilla in mid-season 2005, but was unsuccessful in asking for an undrafted minor league pitching prospect (and slender one at that: 6-1, 160?) with extremely average numbers in A and AA ball. For a guy with ace stuff not to even draw a trade such as this says something about the league's regard for his ten-cent headed ways. Of course, turns out that Texas ended up getting him for a guy with a shattered elbow, so one really can't blame them for saying no the first time.
It was a sad statement when Padilla was traded for an average player like Ric-Rod. It's even sadder that his value didn't improve an iota despite two solid months after the all-star break. What a waste.