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What Went Wrong: Cinderella Eliminates Cinderella

The San Diego Padres' magical postseason run came to an abrupt end against a Philadelphia Phillies team that had just a bit more magic

By Clyde E. DawkinsPublished 3 months ago 3 min read
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The San Diego Padres reached the NLCS for the first time since 1998

The San Diego Padres desperately needed to make up for their immensely disappointing 2021 season, which saw them on the outside looking in despite having pretty big expectations. 2021 saw the Los Angeles Dodgers (the defending World Champions) favored to win the National League West, and those who didn't pick the Dodgers believed that the Padres would get it done. Instead, the San Francisco Giants ended up taking the West, the Dodgers got a Wild Card spot, and as for the Padres, well, they completely fizzled. Part of their problem was the season ending injury suffered by their star player, Fernando Tatis, Jr., and regarding this season, they ended up without Tatis again, but this time, it was a drug policy violation that resulted in an 80-game suspension--which will continue entering the 2023 season.

This time, it ended up not being a deterrent. The Padres went for it during this year's trade deadline, and boy did they cash in! Josh Hader, Juan Soto, and Josh Bell all dealt to the Padres, and the result was a huge 2nd half that saw them nab one of the National League's three Wild Card spots. They defeated the 101-win New York Mets in the Wild Card Series, and they would top that by actually eliminating a Dodgers team who won 111 games and finished 22 games ahead of the Padres in the division. The Padres reached the National League Championship Series for the first time since 1998, back when they were led by legends such as Trevor Hoffman (one of the greatest closers in baseball history) and the late, great Tony Gwynn.

However, that's where things went wrong for the Padres: they ran into an unexpected buzzsaw in the Philadelphia Phillies. The Padres definitely tried, they gave a game effort, but they could not handle what the Phillies brought. The 2022 NLCS was Cinderella vs Cinderella, but the one in the East Coast had just a bit more magic left in the tank, while the Padres run struck midnight. This is not a slight on the Padres, this team really showed out with their big surprise run. However, they had the same problem that happens to a lot of teams: someone bigger and badder got in their way.

Will Manny Machado eventually become a World Champion in his career?

The nucleus of the Padres is definitely Manny Machado, without question. As a Yankees fan, I know Machado best from his years with the Baltimore Orioles, and he was a big part (along with Chris Davis and Adam Jones) in the team's revival into relevance. However, by 2017, the Orioles became a shell of the perennial playoff team they once were, as they were sputtering and dealing with the early blowback of Chris Davis' big contract, and 2018 saw Machado traded to the Dodgers, where he played a big role in the team returning to the World Series. Despite this, the Dodgers didn't keep Machado, as he ended up signing with the Padres during the 2018-19 offseason. This is clearly his last stop; he signed a ten-year deal with the Padres, and the last year of that deal will be the 2028 season, which will see Machado at age 36.

The way I see it, Machado has six years to finally accomplish the ultimate goal of winning a World Series. This year's postseason saw Machado hit .271, drive in seven runs and hit four home runs, pretty good numbers. The Padres do look like they have a good shot to become champions. What needs to happen is this: Tatis has to remain healthy and not have any nonsense against him. If that happens, we may see an uprising in San Diego. For now, while the season came to an early end for the team, the Padres and their fans have a lot to be proud of.

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About the Creator

Clyde E. Dawkins

Born on March 18, 1985. I am an avid fan of sports and wrestling, and I've been a fan of female villains since the age of eight. Also love movies--especially comedy and horror--and among my favorite TV shows are The Simpsons and Family Guy

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  • Antoinette L Brey3 months ago

    I was routing for the padres, but you can only fight so hard for what you want. 3-1 didn't leave much room for a lapse. Thought they did great.

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