Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Padres Report with Beat Writer Corey Brock

Corey Brock was nice enough to stop by The Swinging Friar for the third installment of "The Padres Report." He talked about the clubhouse atmosphere during the Padres' losing streak, if manager Bud Black could be on the hot seat and when Padre fans could possibly see Kyle Blanks.

SwingingFriar: The way this team has been losing games with its lack of offense and the bullpen not being able to hold leads. When you're in the club house after a game, is there a definite aire of frustration between the players or are they still very much on the same page?

Corey Brock: Players are professionals. They don’t go around swearing and breaking things when the media is in the clubhouse. What goes on beyond closed doors? I don’t know. There’s frustration, for sure. I think there’s players in there who realize they’re not performing up to not only their standards but also what the team expects from them. The goal is still the same: To win, and that hasn’t, from my perspective, changed the way they prepare and go about their business.

SwingingFriar: In the last two starts (15 IP), Peavy has given up just two runs and hasn't gotten a single run in support. The last few times during a post game interview, I've seen Jake say something like, "I've pitched in these kinds of games for years." Do you think that's an indirect dig at his offense and do you think he's more frustrated than he's letting on?

Corey Brock: No dig intended, he’s just stating a fact. Sure, he would love more run support and I’m sure it’s frustrating. But he’s Peavy is also a very professional guy and he knows pointing fingers will do him no good, especially on those rare occasions when he, for example, might get bombed and the offense scores six runs for him. I consider him the ultimate teammate and I think his teammates do as well.

SwingingFriar: With the lack of protection around Adrian Gonzalez, there's talk that the Padres plan to give Kyle Blanks some time in the outfield over the next few weeks in Portland. How soon do you think we'll see him in San Diego?

Corey Brock: Hopefully not very soon. I think Blanks, who is 22, needs a full season at Triple-A Portland. He’s not going to be a savior, no matter where you put him. Let him play every day in Portland, play the outfield a few times a week. If you give up on someone on the big league roster, then maybe the Padres will promote him. But I get the feeling they would rather let him stay in the Rose City.

SwingingFriar: In an interview with Darren Smith of XX Sports Radio, General Manager Kevin Towers was asked what it took for the manager to be on the hot seat, to which Towers responded, "The hot seat comes from fans, talk radio, it comes from newspapers." Do you think that's a fair statement?

Corey Brock: It’s absolutely true. The only opinions that matter regarding the manager are that of the owner and general manager. Fans get upset, that’s only natural. Fans are also impatient and so is the media to some extent. When things go bad, they want to know “why.” That’s not a bad thing. I think no matter what the payroll is, there are expectations that your team is always going to do well. When that doesn’t happen, people want answers.

SwingingFriar: In that same interview, Towers was asked about what players could be on the hot seat. Towers said, "I'm sure there are a couple relievers that are on the hot seat right now, I just haven't had enough time to really think about it" What relievers, in your opinion, are on the hot seat and how soon do you think changes will be made?

Corey Brock: I won’t name names, but you’ve already seen Arturo Lopez shipped out. There might be more. They won’t sit and watch guys not perform. Where do you find relievers? Who knows, everyone is looking for relief help. You have to promote from within, which means we’ll likely see Greg Burke at some point, possibly this week.

SwingingFriar: With Cha Seung Baek and Walter Silva due back before the end of this month, who will be moved to the bullpen and who do you think is headed for Triple-A Portland?

Corey Brock: This has changed now that Baek is hurt. Silva will likely go back in the bullpen, especially if Correia pitches like he did the other night in Houston. It looks like he’s figured out some things mechanically.

SwingingFriar: In closing, do you have injury updates on Mark Prior, Shawn Hill, Mike Adams and Everth Cabrera?

Corey Brock: Prior is in Arizona, had a setback, not sure how serious. Nothing new there. Hill is in San Diego, doing rehab work. Adams is getting close to heading out on a rehab stint, maybe later this month. Cabrera is still several weeks away but is working out and doing some one-handed drills with the bat

No comments: