Here is a 2019 Christmas wish list for the San Diego Padres.
It’s that time of year again, the season of family, friends, and holiday spirit. That old Saint Nick and his reindeer will be coming soon and will be asking what Padres’ fans want for Christmas.
This year some San Diego Padres fans have already had one wish come true. Brown is back, and some may say that the uniforms are better than ever. But what else will be on Padres’ fans Christmas wish list?
The Padres have a good pitching core and a couple of top prospects in Mackenzie Gore and Luis Patino. However, if the team really expects to do some damage in the postseason, a top-rated arm will be needed.
With Gerrit Cole, Stephen Strasburg, and Zack Wheeler off the market, the free-agent cupboard is pretty bare, leaving trades as the preferred option to secure an arm. Mike Clevinger continues to be an interesting candidate. The Indians could ask for Luis Patino and other prospects in return.
Clevinger would be the top arm on the team to start the year, but Chris Paddack and Dinelson Lamet could change that by season’s end. Is he really worth trading top prospects for? Only time will tell. For the immediate future, Clevinger could fulfill the first wish on this Christmas list.
A Healthy Franchy Cordero
The current Padres roster still has questions in the outfield. Outside of Tommy Pham playing left field, the rest of the outfield is still up in the air. A healthy Franchy Cordero could easily fill right field.
The toolsy outfielder has been on and off the disabled list seemingly his entire professional career. Cordero has all-star potential if he can stay healthy for a full season. The 25-year-old has been on fire in the Dominican winter league with an OPS of 1.037 for Leones de Escogido.
If he can bring that talent to the Padres on a nightly basis, the team could find itself in contention come September. Even if he was only used as a pinch hitter at the beginning of the season, just getting games and at-bats from Cordero should be a big plus for the team.
Hosmer’s defense returns to normal
When Eric Hosmer was signed from the Kansas City Royals, the Padres thought they were getting a Gold Glove defender that was going to have a batting average around .300 and drive in around 100 runs a year. He did have 99 RBI last season but committed 14 errors, and just looked lost at times defensively.
It was easily the worst defensive year Hosmer has had in the majors. If he can turn it around and have even a career average year, he could get back into positive WAR and be a solid piece of this team.
Now, his contract indicates the Friars should be receiving a lot more than average offense and defense, but even average defense from Hosmer would be a considerable gain over last season.
Will 2016 Myers return?
In 2016, Wil Myers played quite well in the first half of the season, enough to be an all-star and represent the host city. It was also enough for A.J. Preller to offer a heavily backloaded contract extension.
For the next three years, Myers will be paid roughly $20 million a season. His play as of late does not warrant anything near that amount. Thus the team has been rumored to be shopping him around in potential trades. Last season after getting off to a hot start, Myers struggled mightily both at the plate and in the field.
He did end the year on a high note, but the season was all but over at that point for the Padres. As of right now, he is on the team, and if nothing changes, he should be an opening day starter.
If Myers can figure it out, get back to his rookie year numbers, or even those 2016 campaign numbers, he may be worth what he’s being paid. We’ve seen flashes of brilliance, and he’s capable of stardom. Myers just needs to put it all together and do it consistently.
Fernando Tatis Jr. plays 150 games
After Fernando Tatis Jr. went on DL for the final time last season, the Padres were simply a different team. He has Gold Glove and Silver Slugger potential at shortstop.
The promising infielder is a highlight waiting to happen and a joy to watch. If the 2019 Padres would’ve had Tatis Jr. for s full season, there’s no telling how much he would have improved the team. Hopefully, Tatis Jr. can show us what an entire season out of him can do for the Padres in 2020.
120 innings from Garret Richards
When he was signed last season for two years and $15.5 million, Garret Richards was thought to be a decent signing. After the recent starting pitching contracts that were handed out, his contract seems more like a bargain.
If the Padres can get 120 innings from Richards, assuming they are quality, it would be a massive win for A.J. Preller and the Friars. Richards has already been mentoring and assisting the young pitching staff, and that will continue.
If he can also produce on the mound, he could solidify the starting rotation. Due to his veteran status, he may even be the opening day starter. He doesn’t need to have a career year, but a healthy and productive season would be very beneficial to the team.
If the expectation is for all of these wishes to come true in 2020, this list may as well be addressed to Santa Claus, because it’s not likely to happen. However, Christmas is the time where dreams come true, and if two or three of these came to fruition next year, the San Diego Padres would be a team to be reckoned with.
Have a Merry Christmas, and may all of your Padres wishes come true!