The Miami Marlins released Dan Straily on Monday. He will remain on release waivers until Wednesday morning, and at that time, he will become a free agent. If a team claims him while on waivers before Wednesday, he will still be owed his 2019 salary of $5 million, but if the team waits until Wednesday, he will be a free agent.
The Padres, while having an abundance of high-level pitching prospects, are devoid of a proven, veteran starter. First, many thought the Padres would pursue former Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel, who seems to be unrealistic about his price. Then there were rumors of trading for one of the Cleveland Indians’ prized starting pitchers like Corey Kluber or Trevor Bauer. However, those rumors seem to be dying off.
Dan Straily is not the missing piece to make this rotation great, and this roster, a playoff-caliber team. He would be a band-aid. However, this young crop of arms deserves to have as much veteran experience and coaching as possible. If it can come at a lower price, all the better.
Straily has seven years of major league experience, six more than most of the Padres’ rotation. He has never been dominant but has put together some respectable seasons. He has started at least 31 games in two of the last three seasons and 2016, posted a 3.76 ERA in 191 innings. He has had three straight seasons of positive WAR, with a career-high 2.1 WAR in 2017.
Perhaps with some of that Darren Balsley magic that Padres fans have been spoiled with over the years, Straily can at least maintain a spot in the rotation and be respectable.
Another reason why Straily would be attractive is the fact that he is right-handed. If the Padres indeed were to go with a rotation that consisted of Eric Lauer, Joey Lucchesi, Chris Paddack, Matt Strahm and maybe Logan Allen, that leaves Paddack the lone righty in the mix, which would be very unusual and could even leave this rotation at a disadvantage. Straily would add another right-handed arm to the rotation to balance it out.
With seven years, 132 starts and over 755 innings to his name, Straily could be a source of knowledge if nothing more. His career 4.23 ERA and 94 ERA+ certainly leave something to be desired, but in the last three seasons, he has either pitched in a sandbox hitter’s park like Cincinnati or with a terrible team, the Miami Marlins.
To a true professional and great person, thank you for everything Dan. pic.twitter.com/5cKuPY8Hmg
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) March 25, 2019
Straily has made two starts at Petco Park, which happens to be the location of the highest strikeout performance of his career when he fanned 14 Padres’ batters in 2017.