Kemp looks for better team chemistry in '16

Says many new elements from '15 were slow to mix

Kemp looks for better team chemistry in '16

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Outfielder Matt Kemp indicated Thursday that chemistry may well have been one issue that derailed the Padres in 2015.

Not bad chemistry, mind you, but more a lack of chemistry, the result of the team adding so many new players -- Kemp among them -- during general manager A.J. Preller's first offseason with the team last winter.

Padres Spring Training info

"It's hard to put a team together of guys who have never really played with each other," Kemp said. "You've got to build that chemistry. Change can be different, but it can also be good.

"Being around guys you're comfortable with is a little more relaxing."

Kemp was asked if one full year of playing together could help the team in 2016.

"It can help," he said.

Kemp, who knocked in 100 runs but registered a 0.4 WAR, said his first season with the Padres was filled with ups and downs.

Kemp's 100th RBI of the season

"I could have definitely done better,'' he said. "We had our good moments and our bad moments -- a lot of inconsistency. For us, we need to be a little more consistent and play better baseball at the beginning and finish strong."

Pitchers and catchers reported to camp on Thursday, with the first workout set for Friday. Position players are set to arrive on Feb. 23, with the first full workout set for Feb. 24.

Kemp has already been in Arizona for several days, looking to get a head start on his season.

"It feels good to get in the mix, get on the field and move around,'' he said. "I like to get into my routine before Spring Training starts."

Kemp, 31, said he feels fine physically. He's two years removed from surgery on his left ankle and his left shoulder, to repair a detached labrum. Then, just as the Padres and Dodgers were set to consummate their deal in December of 2014, a report leaked that said Kemp had arthritis in both hips.

At this point, though, Kemp said he feels fine. The 154 games he appeared in last season where the most for him since 2011 (161 games).

"I feel a lot better than I did the last couple of years as far as my mobility," he said. "It's definitely something I worked on in the offseason. When you have surgery, it takes some time to bounce back to where you need to be.

"I'm ready to go."

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