December 8, 2022

Motowndesserts

Automotive to Us

Column: Padres messed up with Tatis, but Junior gets most of the blame

Sez Me …

“Can you hear the drums, Fernando?”

Sorry, ABBA, he can’t, not over the engine noise.

What we have here is an unforgivable botch by everyone involved. Fernando Tatis Jr. shows up at camp with a broken wrist?

What is this, Tecolote Little League?

It clearly is time for the Padres to sit on their expensive Fernando thrill ride, slam on the brakes and bring it to a halt.

Add this embarrassment to the long list.

New manager Bob Melvin says he believes Fernando’s motorcycle-riding days are over. Operative word: believes.

Tatis believes — in the thrill of it all.

If not motorcycles, maybe bull running. Skydiving. Hang gliding. High-rise construction. Free solo climbing. Food tasting for Putin. Playing chicken with trains.

Fernando Tatis Jr. is selfish, maybe without knowing it. And his selfishness has to be addressed and dealt with. And not just service by lip.

It’s called responsible adulthood. If only Fernando, even with his broken wrist, could grasp that as easily as he does baseballs.

Can you be too cool? James Dean was.

He has to drop the junior, start acting his age, and quit doing Steve McQueen in the Dominican Republic.

Fernando must realize who he is — if not the face of baseball, on its current Rushmore — and what he means. No. 1, to himself and family, the Padres, a city that no longer has many images, and the two countries in which he plays and lives.

Being reckless on the field is far different than derring-do off it. Fernando should be two selves, not one.

Swashbuckling worked for Errol Flynn and Tyrone Power, but even they took breaks — and their guise was fictional. Tatis doesn’t have to sword fight with destiny 365.

Think about it, no matter how rich you are. Do you spend $340 million on a diamond and put it on the tail of a kite?

Fernando isn’t just a terrific, exciting ballplayer with more growth plates remaining. At 23, he’s a long-term investment, this team’s, this baseball community’s, own uncut diamond.

The Padres saying (praying) he will be out only three months following Wednesday’s surgery on his broken left wrist seems a stretch not even the Optimist Club would allow in its hall.

That’s the hit side. The flip side is it doesn’t heal properly and he’s either not the same, or done.

Recovery isn’t easy or the same for everyone. Although historically a quick healer, Fernando’s missed 99 games in his brief career. And, as Bill Walton says: “The only minor surgery is surgery performed on someone else.”

One motorcycle accident wasn’t good enough for Tatis, so he decided to go for seconds. His wrist was hurting. For months.

I’d like to know how many people who ride motorcycles a lot haven’t gone down.

Ever broken a bone? A bit more painful than scrubbing down with a loofah.

As Dr. David Chao says, it’s his power wrist, and delaying surgery made it worse.

El Niño could have done something about it and probably would be near-ready now. But then, a procedure might have interrupted his motocross career.

He could have seen Padres doctors during the lockout because they’re not employed by the team. Supposedly. Who pays them, the Orioles?

Finally, Tatis has screwed the fans. He’s box office, a matinee idol. He sells seats.

I can’t say how many people have purchased tickets for games early in this season just to see Fernando, but there are more than two or three. From here and elsewhere.

Army intelligence officers would say the Pads and A.J. “My Stuff Is International” Preller did some bad G2, negligent for not keeping an eye on their well-known Zorro in the Dominican, where they have a permanent presence. And if they didn’t already have a doctor there, they should have sent one.

But most of it is on Tatis.

And I believe he’s playing fast and loose with the truth, which somehow works for politicians, but not for The Face.

This is the adult table at Christmas, Fernando. Can’t be a grown-up until you’ve grown up. …

Remember Felipe Alou, the player, going back to Dominica and killing sharks with his bare hands? Something for Tatis to consider. Can’t believe there’s ever been contract language forbidding that. …

The only way to replace a great talent and be as good, is with another great talent. If Padres pitchers don’t turn up the volume, listen for the sound of silence. …

Dodgers get Freddie Freeman, which is great, because with one of the great lineups, they will make more noise when they fall in the October forest. …

Luke Voit. Maybe my finest Christmas gift as a child was a rubber Voit football. …

If you know what the Rockies are doing, then you’re the one who messaged The Sphinx with the right answer to the riddle. …

Having a terrific quarterback still on his rookie deal can be huge — if you play it smart. The NFL Team That Used To Be Here has. Defensive needs addressed. Judases haven’t had a better free agent period than this. …

The AFC West Bomber Wing. …

Tom Brady obviously loves his kids, but after two months of seeing too much of him, Gisele told Tommy to go spend more time with much larger children. …

Surprised? Brady is a football addict. …

Brady is the best quarterback the 49ers never had. …

Inexperienced Packers GM Aaron Rodgers botched the Davante Adams deal. He could have waited for the Raiders to match a deal and gotten two No. 1s. …

Great receivers do not win Super Bowls. …

All of Rodgers’ $150 million is guaranteed, so it’s a baseball deal. With all the deferred money, the Pack has seen its future, and it is mortgaged. …

The NFL’s real MVPs are capologists. …

Invest in clipboards. The Giants are paying Tyrod Taylor $17 million over two years to carry one. …

The Browns wanted an “adult” at quarterback, not Baker Mayfield. Right. Deshaun Watson is Gandhi. …

Scripps Ranch High. Big time. Congrats. …

At least Jeanie Buss saves money with Early Bird meals. “They give you a tenderloin, a salad, and a baked potato for $4.95.” …

Do you believe in miracles? Al Michaels gets a $30 million deal from Amazon. And, with same-day delivery. …

Memo from my dad to Brian Dutcher: “Can’t win if you don’t score.” …

Dutch should have maneuvered Heimlich off the bench. …

Stink O’ The Week Sezment: Mountain West in The Tournament. Molehill South. …

Florida’s Fort Jefferson was thought to be the largest brick structure in the Americas. Until this Tournament. …

Everybody wants to be Steph Curry. Everybody is not. Bobby Knight was right about the 3. It has to go, but it won’t, because rim-clanking and air balls sell. …

John Calipari’s yearly salary at Kentucky: $8 million. Saint Peter’s yearly athletic budget: $8 million. …

RIP, John Clayton. Not many sportswriters have known more about the NFL’s inner workings than Claytie. The League consumed him. …

Treason used to be bad. Isn’t it about time to start prosecuting traitors? Julius and Ethel Rosenberg want their money back. …

Please update your résumé and apply. There never have been more openings for oligarchs.