Thursday, June 9, 2011

Rizzo-Mania Begins Thursday!

When the Padres dealt Adrian Gonzalez to the Red Sox in the offseason, the centerpiece of the deal was said to be Casey Kelly.  Padres General Manager Jed Hoyer said that the deal wouldn't get done without Kelly.  One of the other prospects the Padres received was Anthony Rizzo, a promising 1st baseman.

I looked at the 2010 numbers Rizzo had in AA, and wasn't overly impressed.  Last season he popped 20 HR's and hit .263; not bad numbers, but nothing that made you believe that he was the heir apparent to Gonzo.  Then I actually saw the guy play a little, and I was sold.

In a spring game that was televised here in San Diego, Rizzo tore the cover off the ball, and had 4 hits and 7 RBI's.  He looked like a legitimate star-in-waiting.  Rizzo went down to AAA for more seasoning, and looked liked a Little Leaguer with a fake birth certificate.  Through 52 games, Rizzo has a line of .365/.444/.715 with 16 HR's and 63 RBI's.  The guy has been an absolute beast in Tucson.

The Padres decided to finally call up Rizzo, and pump some life into an anemic offense.  The main reason why the Padres waiting so long to promote Rizzo, were concerns over him achieving Super 2 status, which could cost the Padres millions.

Interest is really starting to heat up in Padres baseball.  Padre fans have not had a young position player with this kind of hype in my lifetime.  Rizzo-Mania has captivated the city, and renewed interest in boring Padres baseball.  Is Rizzo worth the hype?  Only time will tell