Kevin Kouzmanoff was a real favorite of mine. His defense was underappreciated, his hitting was powerful but untimely. As much as I liked him, and I've heard he's great to the fans, his on-base skills were horrendous, and he had a real penchant for hitting into double plays or striking out with runners in scoring position at key points of the game. For these reasons, while I was sad to see him go, I was pleased that 3B was now open for Chase Headley to give it a try. Chase was the Padres #1 prospect a few years back, but I always thought that was more due to the putrid Padres farm system rather than Chase being that outstanding. When he got called, the sports talk stations were hyping it up to be a turning point. In reality, Chase has been a solid but unspectacular player. Here's hoping that a switch to 3B, his natural position, will help his production at the plate.
With Kouz gone, it seems like Chase is the defacto Padre for the card manufacturers to use for the token Padres relic or auto in their sets. Especially since Adrian has blown up and I assume gotten more expensive, it seems like Topps and Upper Deck are concentrating on using Chase, and maybe Heath Bell. At least I know they'll be on the team for a while.
I picked up this 2010 Upper Deck Signature Sensations for a total of $3 on eBay including shipping. It's a sticker auto, but it blends in better than a lot of other Upper Deck sticker autos. Sadly, after looking at some checklists for upcoming Topps sets, this might be the last auto for a while from a bonafide, everyday Padre. Topps has deemed Luis Durango and Cesar Ramos as the token Padres rookies to use in their insert sets. Last year it was Will Venable, Matt Antonelli and later on, Everth Cabrera. Couldn't they have at least picked one of the Padres with actual potential like Jaff Decker or Mat Latos? Ugh. Oh well, here is the new Headley auto!