MLB pays tribute to Gwynn before Game 3

MLB pays tribute to Gwynn before Game 3

SAN FRANCISCO -- Major League Baseball honored the late Tony Gwynn prior to Game 3 of the World Series between the hometown Giants and Royals on Friday at AT&T Park.

Gwynn passed away on June 16 at the age of 54 after a lengthy battle with salivary gland cancer. The three-minute tribute, part of the Stand Up To Cancer proceedings, included a highlights video from Gwynn's 20-year career, all of which was spent with the Padres. The ceremony was attended on the field by several members of the Gwynn family, including his four grandchildren and widow, Alicia, plus Commissioner-elect Rob Manfred.

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Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Boomskie on Baseball. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres name Geaney director of player development

Padres name Geaney director of player development

SAN DIEGO -- The Padres hired Sam Geaney on Thursday as their director of player development, a role that will have him oversee the organization's Minor League system.

"It's a big challenge," Geaney said. "Over the coming months, it will be getting familiar with a lot of the quality people already there in San Diego, learning about the players, the coaches. There are staffing decisions that need to be made and just learning more about the position."

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres dismiss hitting coach Plantier

Padres dismiss hitting coach Plantier

SAN DIEGO -- The Padres, who ranked last in the Major Leagues in several offensive categories this past season, relieved Phil Plantier of his hitting-coach duties on Wednesday.

Plantier, who recently completed his third season as hitting coach, was the sixth person to hold the job since Petco Park opened in 2004. He was under contract through 2015.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Rivera thankful for chances to prove himself in Majors

Decade-long journey culminated in starting opportunity with Padres

Rivera thankful for chances to prove himself in Majors

A baseball season is a marathon, not a sprint. So are many baseball careers.

As the Padres' 2014 season approached its conclusion last month, Rene Rivera joked about the time it took him to become an overnight success.

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Bill Center is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Turner leads group of Padres prospects in AFL

Turner leads group of Padres prospects in AFL

Trea Turner watched last year's Fall Stars Game on MLB Network from North Carolina State, where he was still a student. The event made an impression on him, and Turner set a goal to one day play in the Arizona Fall League.

Just a year later, Turner has made it to the AFL. The shortstop is on Surprise's taxi squad, meaning he only plays twice a week -- on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Still, he is happy to have reached the prestigious league so quickly.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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As a player, KC, SF both meaningful stops for Black

Padres manager developed into Major Leaguer with Royals, spent four years with Giants

As a player, KC, SF both meaningful stops for Black

SAN DIEGO -- As someone who grew up in the state of Washington, was drafted by Seattle and made his big league debut with the Mariners, Bud Black didn't exactly embrace the news that he was traded from his hometown team to the Royals in March 1982.

As it turns out, it was the best thing for the then-24-year-old pitcher.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Former GM Smith named senior advisor, baseball operations

23-year Padres vet to focus on scouting; changes made to Minor League staff

Former GM Smith named senior advisor, baseball operations

SAN DIEGO -- Randy Smith, who first joined a Major League front office in 1985, likes to joke that he has held just about every title there is to be held in the front office.

On Friday, he earned another one.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Ross among elite NL pitchers in 2014

Padres righty posted 14 straight quality starts at one point, smashing club record

Ross among elite NL pitchers in 2014

The acclaimed aces of the National League this season were Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw and Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright.

Right there with that duo in several key statistical categories was the Padres' Tyson Ross. Forget Ross's 13-14 record. Win-loss records are the most overrated statistic in baseball when it comes to measuring a pitcher's performance.

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Johnson begins throwing; Padres have '15 option on righty

San Diego can bring back starter, who missed all of '14, for $4 million

Johnson begins throwing; Padres have '15 option on righty

SAN DIEGO -- Last Thursday, without fanfare and far from a big league ballpark, Josh Johnson picked up a baseball and did the one thing he had waited five long months to do.

He threw it to someone.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres prospects get chance to sharpen skills

Instructional League brings opportunity for 44 players to improve game

Padres prospects get chance to sharpen skills

SAN DIEGO -- The Padres recently concluded their annual Instructional League in Arizona, a three-week program aimed at individual improvement for some of the top prospects in the Minor League system.

Padres vice president of player development Randy Smith presided over the program that not only had 44 players but a handful of Minor League coaches, roving instructors and coordinators.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Rivals make GM, managerial changes to keep up in NL West

D-backs, Rockies and Padres shake up front office, dugout

Rivals make GM, managerial changes to keep up in NL West

As the Giants bid to win their third World Series title since 2010, most of the other members of the National League West have been busy restructuring in attempt to find the mix that might bring them the kind of consistent success San Francisco has gained with its stable and tenured management structure.

While Giants general manager Brian Sabean and manager Bruce Bochy both stand as the longest-tenured National League employees in their respective roles, three other NL West members -- the D-backs, Padres and Rockies -- have all recently hired either a new GM or manager.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres will give new GM Preller payroll flexibility

Padres will give new GM Preller payroll flexibility

SAN DIEGO -- First-year general manager A.J. Preller will have payroll flexibility for the upcoming season, said Padres executive chairman Ron Fowler.

Fowler said in an email to MLB.com on Thursday that the team has a "placeholder amount" for payroll for the 2015 season, but the club won't be afraid to stretch that number based on moves Preller wants to make during the offseason.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres name Kemp director of international scouting

Padres name Kemp director of international scouting

SAN DIEGO -- When A.J. Preller was hired as general manager of the Padres in August, Chris Kemp was excited for him, but in no way saw it as an opportunity to leave his own post with the Rangers for a job and a chance to be reunited with Preller in San Diego.

"I never really thought about the next job because I was so immersed in the one that I had," said Kemp, who had just completed his fifth year with the Rangers as an area scout, scouring the Carolinas and also eastern Tennessee for players.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Renfroe brings big bat to Fall League

Outfield prospect homers just days after shining in AFL Hitting Challenge

Renfroe brings big bat to Fall League

Outfielder Hunter Renfroe, the 13th overall pick in the 2013 First-Year Player Draft, has had a busy first full professional season. He played in 129 games between Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore and Double-A San Antonio and represented the Padres in both the California-Carolina League All-Star Game and the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. Now, he is continuing his eventful year in the Arizona Fall League.

When San Antonio's season ended Sept. 1, Renfroe was ready for a break before the start of Fall ball. He used the time off to get away from the game and relax at home.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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With new GM, Padres may be in for many changes in '15

With new GM, Padres may be in for many changes in '15

SAN DIEGO -- The offseason always offers up the potential for some intrigue, and with the recent hire of new general manager A.J. Preller, Padres manager Bud Black can easily envision a scenario where this winter is anything but mundane.

And in terms of shaping the roster for 2015, Black has a suspicion that the team that ended the season against the Giants on Sunday could look dramatically different come Opening Day.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Stars of tomorrow ready to shine as '14 AFL season begins

Stars of tomorrow ready to shine as '14 AFL season begins

Over its 23-year history, the Arizona Fall League has developed a reputation as a finishing school for baseball's top prospects. This year, once again, many of the game's best young players will gather in the desert, hoping to prove themselves in the same league that helped catapult Derek Jeter, Dustin Pedroia and Mike Trout to stardom.

When the AFL opens play Tuesday, the concentration of talent will again be readily apparent. Two of the three Opening Day games feature premium pitching matchups, and the third game is highlighted by two of the best shortstops in the Minor Leagues.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Ten finalists named for Frick broadcasting award

Ten finalists named for Frick broadcasting award

The list of 2015 Ford C. Frick Award finalists has been narrowed to 10, with the winner set to be announced on Dec. 10 at the Winter Meetings.

The finalists are Richie Ashburn, Billy Berroa, Rene Cardenas, Dizzy Dean, Dick Enberg, Ernie Johnson Sr., Ralph Kiner, Ned Martin, Joe Nuxhall and Jack Quinlan. The award is presented annually "for excellence in baseball broadcasting" by the Hall of Fame.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Pitching thrives, but Padres' bats falter in inconsistent '14

Pitching thrives, but Padres' bats falter in inconsistent '14

SAN DIEGO -- There was a palpable tone of lament in Jedd Gyorko's voice recently when he talked about the offensive struggles that essentially waylaid the Padres' season as far back as April.

And, no matter how good the team's pitching was, the dearth of runs made it extremely difficult to win, according to the Padres' second baseman.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Renfroe logs top score of NL prospects at Bowman Challenge

Renfroe logs top score of NL prospects at Bowman Challenge

SCOTTSDALE, AZ. -- Hunter Renfroe started his Arizona Fall League season with a huge jolt Friday night, when he logged the top score of any National League prospect at the Bowman Hitting Challenge. Renfroe, San Diego's No. 4 prospect on the MLB.com list, went deep four times in total.

The Bowman Hitting Challenge is the first event on the AFL schedule, and games won't start until Tuesday. Renfroe wowed the Salt River Fields audience with his round Friday, which included a shot to the power alley. The event was won by Hunter Dozier, one of Kansas City's top prospects.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Preller breaks down early plans for offseason

Preller breaks down early plans for offseason

SAN DIEGO -- A day after the Padres put the finishing touches on a 77-85 season, their eighth consecutive season without a postseason berth, new general manager A.J. Preller faced reporters to talk about what has transpired during his seven-plus weeks on the job.

And, more importantly, what lies ahead for the franchise.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Season-finale loss showcases glimpse of future

Padres end campaign with 77 victories, their most since 2010

Season-finale loss showcases glimpse of future

SAN FRANCISCO -- The game and the season hadn't been finished more than 20 minutes Sunday when Padres manager Bud Black caught himself already looking ahead to 2015.

Even while he was queried after a 9-3 loss to the Giants in the regular-season finale for both teams at AT&T Park, Black spoke at length about the September auditions several young players went through this month and what it might mean for the future.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Winter ball important for Grandal, Liriano

Winter ball important for Grandal, Liriano

SAN FRANCISCO -- After Sunday's regular-season finale, when Padres players scatter to various points to begin their offseason, a handful will begin only a short period of unwinding before beginning to play yet again during winter ball.

For two Padres -- catcher/first baseman Yasmani Grandal and rookie outfielder Rymer Liriano -- playing time this winter rates far more important in terms of development than it does for many of their teammates who will also play this winter.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Facing Peavy an odd experience for Padres' Balsley

Former San Diego ace opposes Friars for first time since leaving in '09

Facing Peavy an odd experience for Padres' Balsley

SAN FRANCISCO -- From the top step of the dugout Saturday, Padres pitching coach Darren Balsley stood and watched as Jake Peavy slowly walked from the Giants' dugout to the mound for the top of the first inning.

For a moment, Balsley had trouble digesting it all: right player, wrong dugout and certainly the wrong uniform, right?

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Padres' Alvarez on MLB Pipeline All-Prospect Team

Sluggers Bryant and Gallo make the cut, as do pairs of Dodgers, Nationals and Red Sox

Padres' Alvarez on MLB Pipeline All-Prospect Team

Last week, MLBPipeline.com handed out year-end awards for top hitting and pitching prospects. As much as Kris Bryant and Tyler Glasnow were deserving recipients, it was clear there were many other fantastic performances in 2014 that deserved some attention.

With that in mind, MLBPipeline.com announced its 2014 All-Prospect Team on Friday. There's a prospect for each position, including three outfielders, a DH, a right-handed and left-handed starting pitcher and one reliever. The only requirements were that a player appeared at some point on a team's Top 20 list on Prospect Watch and spent the majority of the year in the Minor Leagues.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com and writes a blog, B3. Follow @JonathanMayoB3 on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Stults finishes strong as Padres lose late

Starter allows one run in seven innings; Thayer gives up pair in eighth

Stults finishes strong as Padres lose late

SAN FRANCISCO -- In danger of losing his spot in the rotation and with his ERA seemingly headed toward infinity, Padres starting pitcher Eric Stults looked for help in July, asking pitching coach Darren Balsley for ideas on how to remedy all that was troubling him.

There was a mechanical fix and the addition of an upbeat tempo in delivery that paid dividends during the second half, as Stults looked like a completely different pitcher, a pattern that continued Saturday even as the Padres fell to the Giants, 3-1, at AT&T Park.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Kennedy closes out season with strong win

Starter passes 200-innings mark, allows no earned runs vs. Giants

Kennedy closes out season with strong win

SAN FRANCISCO -- Wins are wonderful and strikeouts can be stupendous, but for Padres manager Bud Black, there's always been one statistical mark that truly measured the impact of a starting pitcher the best -- innings pitched.

On Friday, pitcher Ian Kennedy reached a notable statistical plateau, allowing one unearned run as the Padres edged the Giants, 4-1, before a sold-out crowd at AT&T Park.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Homer barrage doesn't hold up for Padres

Grandal slugs two of four long balls, including first career grand slam

Homer barrage doesn't hold up for Padres

SAN FRANCISCO -- No team in the big leagues has scored fewer runs than the Padres, so you can imagine the relief and elation that rolled through the visiting dugout at AT&T Park on Thursday as San Diego not only got back into a game it once trailed by six runs, but actually took a late lead.

But on a night when the Padres and Giants combined for 17 runs on 23 hits -- including six home runs -- it was a squeeze bunt by rookie Matt Duffy that made the difference as the Giants saved the final rally for themselves, holding on for a 9-8 victory.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Wieland's first win fueled by Medica's home run

Padres now have most victories at home in Petco Park history

Wieland's first win fueled by Medica's home run

SAN DIEGO -- In 11 seasons at Petco Park, the Padres have won two NL West titles and factored in two other playoff races that ended on the season's final day. But they had never won as many as 48 games in their downtown San Diego home -- until Wednesday night, that is.

With a 4-3 victory over Colorado -- the first career win for embattled righty Joe Wieland -- the Padres wrapped up their most successful home campaign since 1998 and tied their third highest home win total ever.

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AJ Cassavell is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Padres to focus on bats in offseason

Padres to focus on bats in offseason

SAN DIEGO -- Padres manager Bud Black got a bit nostalgic Wednesday afternoon during his final pregame media session at Petco Park this season. More specifically, he spent some time revisiting where the Padres stood at this point a year ago.

Entering the offseason last September, the Padres felt as though they had a lineup that was more or less set, Black said. This year, it's the pitching staff that looks stable, and the offense that could see a bit of a reshuffling come Hot Stove season.

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AJ Cassavell is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Fortunes split on pair of replay challenges

Fortunes split on pair of replay challenges

SAN DIEGO -- Padres manager Bud Black challenged a pair of close plays down the first-base line in the fourth inning of Wednesday's Padres-Rockies game, and he finished the frame 1-for-2.

With a man on first base and no one out, Padres left fielder Tommy Medica used the entire field for his fourth-inning double -- a double that wasn't even awarded until a review proved the ball had landed fair, kicking up chalk on the right-field foul line.

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AJ Cassavell is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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