With several trade chips, the San Diego Padres could be very active at the MLB Trade Deadline.
The San Diego Padres are in a strange position as they are a team that could both buy and sell at the MLB Trade Deadline.
This years’ July 31 deadline will be the final opportunity for players to be added to teams in making their playoff rosters accurate. There will no longer be an August waiver deadline, so organizations will need to know what direction they are headed one full month earlier than usual. There should be some exciting moves this summer, and the Padres should be front and center in almost all trade discussions.
A.J. Preller and his baseball operations staff currently have young major league players and relevant prospects available for trade.
Here is a look at some of the apparent trade chips for the Padres.
Almost every outfielder, except for Franmil Reyes is probably available for trade. Dealing La Mole would not be recommended despite his issues on the field in regards to defense. He means way too much to the team and is still only 23 years old. Manuel Margot might be made available, but he is the teams one real option in center along with Travis Jankowski. It may be difficult to pry him away from the Padres, but they could listen to offers. Wil Myers and Hunter Renfroe make sense to be traded if a team meets Preller’s asking price. It is no secret the team would probably like to get away from Myers’ contract, but he hasn’t played well this season. The slugging Renfroe is playing out of his mind, and his value is arguably at the highest it has ever been.
Josh Naylor could be shopped as he looks major league ready. The Padres have given him plenty of playing time this past week or two which further complicates the crowded outfield situation. Franchy Cordero is an interesting player, as he can play center but is still raw in his outfield abilities. Cordero is a statcast darling but has issues making contact and has been the victim of bad health in recent years. This position is full of promise, and the Padres will need to make a decision eventually in regards to all this depth. There are rumors that the Padres have already been fielding calls from teams about Hunter Renfroe. Something will need to be done as Michael Gettys, Edward Olivares, Jorge Ona, and Buddy Reed are getting closer to being major league ready. The prospects will just keep coming for the San Diego Padres.
Austin Hedges, Francisco Mejia, and Austin Allen are all under the age of 26. Hedges is the established starter, but he has offensive issues. The Padres seem intent on giving him ample time to work out his problems with the bat, but he needs to progress in 2019. Both Mejia and Allen are offensive first catchers, but both have made great strides with the glove. The Padres will eventually need to choose in regards to their catching future.
Then there is Luis Torrens, Luis Campusano and Blake Hunt who are in the minors. The team also just drafted a catcher with the #73 overall pick in the draft. Logan Driscoll is 21 and could be a fast riser in the system. The Padres have plenty of catching depth at virtually every level, and that will surely be of interest to other teams. The Padres will likely move a catcher or two in the future. There just isn’t enough playing time for all these guys and they are starting to all progress to the major league level.
Young Starting Pitchers
The Padres have plenty of young starting pitchers currently on the 25-man roster. Eric Lauer and Joey Lucchesi are both under the age of 26. Chris Paddack, Nick Margevicius, Pedro Avila and Cal Quantrill all made their major league debuts this year for the Padres. The team also has Logan Allen in El Paso who will eventually be called up this 2019 season. The team has a great future when it comes to starting pitchers.
But wait. The Padres also have MacKenzie Gore, Luis Patino, Adrian Morejon, Michel Baez, Ryan Weathers, Reggie Lawson, Gabe Mosser, Mason Thompson, Joey Cantilo, Ronald Bolanos and Osvaldo Hernandez in the minors and that is only a few of the higher regarded pitching prospects. There is unbelievable depth in the Padres system in regards to pitching, and you can be sure other teams are taking note of that. The Padres will eventually need to transition some of these young men to the bullpen or trade some of them. Expect a few pitchers to be dealt relatively soon as the Padres make room for the next generation of talent that is on the rise in the lower levels,
Minor League Players
With Fernando Tatis and Manny Machado anchored on the left side of the Padres infield, suddenly several players are expendable. Hudson Potts leads the list as he is a prototypical third baseman. He is already one of the youngest players in the Texas League at the age of 20. The right-handed hitter is off to a slow start in 2019 but is a very highly-touted power hitter with decent upside. He has played some second base this season, but Potts’ future is surely at third base. Speaking of the hot corner, Ty France could also be of serious interest to a team looking for a young upgrade at third base. France has also played some second base but could be more useful at third for a major league team.
The Padres have several shortstop prospects on the minor leagues. Gabriel Arias and Owen Miller are two of the higher rated prospects. Miller will probably move to second permanently eventually, but Arias is a defensive wizard at the position. Arias is showing a promising bat with plus power, and his stock could continue to rise in time. Expect the Padres to field many calls on these two plus names like Justin Lopez, Jordy Barley and Luis Almanzar on a lesser degree. The Padres have middle infield depth at the minor league level, and that could result in a trade.