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July players of the month 

Hitter of the month:

RF – Matt Kemp

July totals:  282/378/529 –   5 HR, 6 2B, 15 RBI

While certainly not carrying a team the way we know he sometimes can, Matt Kemp at least started producing at levels more consistent with his career norms in July.  While still striking out too often (20 K in 24 games), the Padres right fielder finally discovered his power and pushed his WAR into plus territory for the season.

Pitcher of the month:

RHP – James Shields

July totals: 1-2, 2.50 ERA, 1.22 WHIP

Baseball is nothing if not infuriating.  Shields posted his best peripheral numbers of the season in the same month he lost more games than he won.  Despite the 1-2 record, Shields improved his ground ball ratio, opponents AVG and OBP.  There are some very troubling trends, as well.  Shields is seeing his strikeout rate declining, he is throwing the most pitches per inning on the staff, leading to only 6 inning outings and he keeps allowing home runs (5 more in July, 5th in the NL in 2015).  The fact his July ERA was still in the mid-2’s is, then, somewhat remarkable.

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About the author: Richard Dorsha

The Padres above all others. There is nothing else in sports I want more than a Padres World Series title. My sports fandom begins and ends with the Friars. A San Diegan and Padre fan for more than 30 years now. Love to view the Padres from a historical context after reading about the team's humble beginnings to the dream come true of joining the National League. Been to more Padre games than I can count, seen more hours of Padre baseball than I care to mention.