The Padres and Mariners share a spring training home, a so-called natural rivalry -- and a habit of pondering new ballpark dimensions. There's a lot of talk in Seattle about moving in the fences before next season, writes friend Larry Stone of the Seattle Times. The situation moved to Code Red after the Padres swept the Mariners last night. Here's Stone:
"No one will commit to it, but it's something they will look at closely. They are actually a decent offense on the road, hitting .257/.307/.417, good for a 17-20 record. But at home, they are hitting. .199 with a .282 on-base and .306 slugging. Their record is 10-17 at Safeco. They have scored just 83 runs in 27 games. They got swept by the lowly Padres at home. Eric Wedge is getting tired of the weak performances at Safeco, and tired of all the talk about it."
Stone quotes Wedge on the home-road splits -- "You can't deny it, it's there" -- and the need for "a certain degree of grit about you in regards to where you play."
Finally, if you can excuse the pun, here's Wedge hitting one out of the park: "...I've said it from day one when I got this job. I don't give a damn where we play, who we're playing, what the temperature is, how many people are in the stands."