We have our first clue…

So today the El Paso AAA Team released their first clue toward the identity of our future baseball team. The El Paso 411 Facebook page has this photo up from the team:

The First Clue

The First Clue

Not sure if I told you guys but, I am amazing with Photoshop! So, using my skills I have superimposed the eyes onto all 5 possible mascots. Here they are (Desert Gators, Aardvarks, Buckaroos, Chihuahuas and Sun Dogs):

El Paso Desert Gators?El Paso Aardvark's?El Paso Buckaroos?

El Paso Chihuahuas?El Paso Sun Dogs?

See… told you I was great with Photoshop. 🙂 Rumor here in El Paso has it that it is going to be the El Paso Sun Dogs, which I am fine with. But, I must say, the eyes look great on the Aardvark.

Stay tuned for more updates… and hopefully an update on who we have to look forward to seeing next season!

Team Name Voting Begins!

Plaza de los Lagartos

Plaza de los Lagartos (Photo credit: Eric Enders)

Well, the top 5 names have finally been released for the El Paso (and everywhere else) public to vote on. Here are the nominees, in no particular order… actually, they are in a particular order from stupidest to less stupid.

1. Aardvarks. I don’t know what to say about this. A Google search of El Paso and Aardvark turns up a wrecker service and an auto repair shop, that clearly named themselves that in order to be first in the phone book (if you don’t know what a phone book is… it’s a book with a list of phone numbers to everyones land lines… land lines are phones that you have in your house – actually connected to your house – they don’t have internet – they don’t take pictures). There is a zoo in El Paso so, I guess maybe the name comes from that. I can’t find any information on the internet that leads me to believe they even have an Aardvark.

2. Buckaroos. (No, I’m not making this up) Apparently Buckaroo is how white people started saying Vaquero (Cowboy in Spanish). So, we are using an Anglicanized version of a Spanish word to represent the Cowboys who were mostly Mexican in this area, which by the way is full of Mexican people. But… we didn’t choose Vaqueros (or Estrellas) as a finalist. Nope, we chose Buckaroos!

3. Chihuahuas. OK well… we live in the Chihuahuan desert. We live next to the Mexican state of Chihuahua. There also seems to be an inordinate amount of big ol’ vatos around El Paso with tiny little Chihuahuas. That being said, this name is stupid. What player would be proud to be a Chihuahua?

4. Sun Dogs. This is the second best. Believe it or not. Sun Dogs. El Paso is the Sun City so, that part works. The dogs part? I don’t know. Maybe it’s the whole big dudes with little dogs thing I was talking about. I just don’t get it. I waited so long for these names to come out… not just because I was hoping that Estrellas would be there but because it’s OUR team! I can’t be happy about the Sun Dogs. It doesn’t even make sense.

5. Desert Gators. This is the one I just voted for and will vote for everyday from now until the 27th when voting ends. This is the best of the worst. It is also the only one that makes sense in reference to El Paso. We live in the Desert, we’ve already established that. Now, you may be asking yourself “why the gators?”. Well, I will tell you.

In San Jacinto Plaza in the heart of downtown El Paso, only a few blocks from the new stadium, there is a statue of “Los Lagartos” by Luis Jimenez. The statue is there in honor of the Alligators who used to reside in a moat within the plaza. For almost 100 years Alligators lived in San Jacinto Plaza until 1974 when they had to be moved to the El Paso Zoo due to a rise in vandalism (or maybe to eat the Aardvarks, CAUSE THERE AREN’T ANY THERE!). So, needless to say, the Gators are a source of pride and fond memories for many El Pasoans. The desert is a source of something for El Pasoans. Mostly sand and heat but, it can be beautiful as well.

Here is the link to the voting. There are no write-ins allowed, sorry. I would love to get Estrellas back in there, or maybe the Mountain Stars, Mountain Rainbows, Mountain Dew… whatever. Almost anything would be better than 4 out of these 5 finalists.

http://www.elpasotriplea.com/vote

 

 

The Future El Paso Whatever’s: Part 1 (The Lineup)

Our team doesn’t have a name yet. Soon, though. Very soon. It also doesn’t have any players yet (I know, the Tucson Padres do but, I’m pretending our team is totally separate from them). I’m sure that some players from the Tucson Padres will end up here in El Paso but, who else do we have to look forward to seeing here in EP?

“The Future El Paso Whatever’s”  is a review of the entire Padres organizational depth chart.

One of the coolest things about having a AAA team in town is going to be seeing players from the Majors come down to work on things or rehab. Our guys here with the El Paso Whatever’s will also be moving up and down as needed to fill in for injured players. This first posts will be about the players that are currently in the Majors. We might not see too many of them. In later editions, we will get into the prospects that we may have here in El Paso next year… the true Ninos of the Padres.

The Padres Lineup

1. Everth Cabrera (SS) – This is Cabrera’s first full season in the Padres lineup and he is proving to be a very useful player. He is currently 10th in the NL in WAR (Wins Above Replacement) and has a slash line of .276/.361/.336 with 23 Stolen Bases. He will be eligible for arbitration for the first time this year.

English: Everth Cabrera, shortstop and second ...

Everth Cabrera, shortstop and second baseman for the San Diego Padres, at Fan Fest on April 5, 2009. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I would say that we have no chance of seeing him here in El Paso next season, but then this Biogenesis thing happened yesterday. Cabrera has been linked to steroids and if MLB suspends Cabrera for 50 games, I would think it would be the beginning of next season. So, there’s a chance we could see him around the middle of May to get some AB’s in before returning.

2. Chris Denorfia (RF) – Denorfia is the Padres everyday RF and is signed through 2014. .299/.352/.390. Interesting stat: 6th in NL in Grounding into Double Plays (offense), 5th in NL in Double Plays from the Outfield (defense). Here’s a highlight reel… sorry about the music.

Really no chance of seeing Denorfia in El Paso, barring an injury rehab stint.

3. Chase Headley (3B) – Arbitration eligible this year. The talk in the pre-season was of how much the Padres needed to lock up Headley long term. He did have a good year last year. His play did warrant a new deal. This year however, he has a .246/.340/.385 line with 5 HR and 17 RBI. Not bad but, the Padres may get a better deal financially after this year.

He’s not going to be in  EP, unless he has an injury. Haha… that rhymes. I rap almost as good as those guys in the Denorfia Video.

4. Carlos Quentin (LF) – He’s playing like Carlos Quentin. He is with the Padres through 2016 when they will no doubt decline the mutual option and instead pay his $3M buyout. .230/.340/.443, 5 HR, 17 RBI. His stats are very similar to Headley’s. Is Headley gonna be looking for Quentin money? We’ll see. Quentin is 5th in the NL in HBP (Hit By Pitch), one of which was from Zach Greinke and caused him to have to break Greinke’s collar bone.

We may see him at some point to work on his swing. Probably not though.

5. Yonder Alonso (1B) – #1 in Fielding Percentage as a First Baseman. .284/.335/.416, 6 HR, 29 RBI. This guy’s a stud. He’s a Padre through at least 2018.

Again…injury, maybe.

6. Yasmani Grandal (c) – Just came back from 50 game steroid suspension. Last season, .297/.394/.469 in 60 games.

Yasmani Grandal

Yasmani Grandal (Photo credit: SD Dirk)

Like Everth Cabrera, Grandal is linked with the Biogenesis steroid scandal. It is very likely that he will be suspended 100 games. Like Cabrera, we will most likely see him sometime next year if he is suspended.

7. Jedd Gyorko (2B) – I was really excited to see Jedd play in El Paso when I found out we were going to have the Padres AAA team. But, it ain’t happening. This is Jedd’s first year in the Padres lineup and it looks like he’s not gonna be going anywhere. .278/.338/.434, 6 HR, 21 RBI. Gyorko is eligible for arbitration in 2016. It started off rough for Jedd but, he had pretty much the best May in history (I am prone to exaggeration, just so you know). Check out this article at friarhood.com. It’s one of my new favorite sites, by the way.

He ain’t coming back… unless he gets hurt.

8. Will Venable (CF) – Venable mostly plays against RHP’s. It’s not helping his batting average much, though. .219/.280/.397. His 7 HR and 19 RBI are pretty good though. In 87 chances in the outfield, he has a 1.000 fielding percentage. He is arbitration eligible this year.

Venable and Blanks (bats against LHP – we will discuss him Friday) are kind of up in the air when it comes to seeing them in El Paso next year. Cameron Maybin is the likely starting CF for the Padres. We will talk about him on Friday as well.

So, that’s it for the lineup. Tomorrow we will discuss the starting pitchers…. possibly the bullpen. We will see. Please comment with any questions, corrections, anything. I am learning about the team as I go, there’s a good chance I am completely wrong about some things. This blog is about my research into our El Paso Whatever’s, it’s a learning process. Regardless of who is here next year, the fact remains… El Paso will have AAA Baseball!!! Woohoo!!!

Defending My Adopted Hometown

So, I got in a Twitter disagreement the other day with a Tucson Padres fan. Like I said in one of my first posts here, it has been hard for me to find enough information about our future El Paso AAA team. Maybe that’s just because I’m an informationaholic.

I was looking on Twitter for anything I could find about our team. Anything relating to El Paso, the Tucson Padres, AAA Baseball… anything. That’s when I stumbled onto this:

My interest had officially been piqued. Here is the entire conversation. Please don’t harass this guy. He was contrite by the end (meaning I won!) and I consider him a Twitter friend now.

Moral of the story: Don’t step to me on Twitter! Just kidding, the moral here is we need to appreciate what we have. If we don’t support our team once it is here, we will end up just like Tucson. We don’t want to be the city with “nothing left”.

El Paso… Are You Ready for Some Baseball?

Tucson Padres

Tucson Padres (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have no idea why anyone would be upset over El Paso getting a new stadium for a new (at least it’s new to us) baseball team. But, nevertheless, a lot of people in El Paso are still upset over not getting to vote on the demolition of City Hall in order to build the new stadium. My thinking is, if the people who work everyday in it think it needs to be demolished, who is the average citizen to say otherwise?

Needless to say, I am pumped about our new stadium and team. I spent a lot of time in Durham, North Carolina growing up. I have seen first hand how the building of a new ballpark in a “run down” area of the city can turn everything around. Downtown Durham was dead when I was a kid. Now, it is the vibrant heart of the city all because of the Durham Bulls and their amazing new stadium. I have no doubt in my mind that El Paso will see the same type of rejuvenation when the El Paso Whatever’s start playing next year.

 

The “Whatever’s” part of that last paragraph leads me into discussing the teams name. I voted several times in the recent poll on the team’s website. The voting has closed and any day now I think we will be able to vote on our team’s new name. Because voting is closed, I think it is safe for me to go ahead and discuss my nomination here. I suggested the El Paso Estrellas. In honor of the star on the mountain (that the group who bought the Tucson Padres is named after), also in honor of El Paso’s heritage using the Spanish word for star instead of… well… star. I know that the owner has said he is looking for a kind of unique, silly name (i.e. Albuquerque Isotopes). I know that Estrella’s is not completely unique or silly but, I like it.

 

I will update this blog  soon when the nominees are out. Hopefully to advertise my name being there to vote on. I wouldn’t mind winning the Season Tickets that are up for grabs.

The start of something good?

It’s kind of weird starting off a new blog. I’m pretty sure that nobody is going to be reading this. I’m not sure why they would. I’m not somebody that anybody’s heard of. I’m also not an expert on the topic that I’m going to be writing about.

The good thing is though that I do know a lot about baseball. That knowledge is just sitting in my head not being used.

So why did I start a San Diego Padres minor league blog? Well for one it seems like in the blogosphere there’s not a lot of coverage of the Padres minor leagues. Also I’ve been reading a lot on the Padres minor leagues because of our new team that starts play next year in El Paso. So because I was spending a lot of time studying the Padres minor leaguers anyway I figured why not start a blog and help other people find the kind of information I’ve been looking for.

So I hope whoever out there stumbles on this blog enjoys it. And maybe you come back for more later. Its going to be a slow start but its going to be a lot of fun so stick around. I hope you enjoy The Descendientes…

Image of El Paso's future AAA Park. Future home of the San Diego Padre's AAA team.

Image of El Paso’s future AAA Park. Future home of the San Diego Padre’s AAA team.