The Padres are not going to win the NL West. The Padres are not going to contend for a wild-card berth. That much we know.
What we don't know is how many losses they will pile up before October.
After a three game series that begins Friday in Los Angeles the Padres return to PETCO Park for a seven game home stand. They will face the Houston Astros (20-games below .500) for four games then play three against Colorado (19-games below .500). The only thing separating the Padres from the Rockies and the NL West basement are a few percentage points. A solid showing against those two National League bottom feeders could very well keep the 2012 loss total under 100, the Mendoza line for Major League clubs.
Surprisingly, the Padres have only hung 100+ loss seasons five times in franchise history.
Not surprisingly, four of those campaigns came in their first six years of existence. In 1969, the Padres inaugural season, they finished a franchise worst 52-110. Through 81-games this season they were 31-50, not quite a 110-loss pace but reaching the century mark for defeats is a distinct possibility.
The team's last 100-loss season was back in 1993 (61-101).