Did the San Diego Padres fail in not trading for Mookie Betts?

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Credit: USA Today Sports

The San Diego Padres may have had an opportunity to acquire Mookie Betts, but did the club fail in not obtaining the former AL MVP?

Mookie Betts could have been a member of the San Diego Padres.

Going down to the wire for the services of the outfielder, San Diego lost to their rival and the dominant team in the division, the Los Angeles Dodgers.

As painful as it is to lose the potential of Betts to the Dodgers, the Padres may have saved themselves in the long run.

Trading for Betts was not going to be simple. San Diego was going to need to pay, and the price tag was undoubtedly steep. The Padres have a profound farm system and are armed with several young players at the major league level. The Red Sox salivated at the idea of acquiring multiple players from Preller and the Padres as their farm system is presently hurting. They desired the Padres’ prospects so much that the Bean Towners even discussed taking on Wil Myers‘ contract.

For San Diego, the idea of this was very tempting. But not enough to make a deal.

In the end, A.J. Preller and his staff decided to keep their young players. Mortgaging the future for a rental would be a tough pill to swallow. The fans may have been enthralled with the acquisition, but Preller is vying for his job. There must not be mistakes in constructing a winning team.

I am well aware that the Padres’ playoff drought is over ten years long. There is no doubt that the fan base and the ownership group are itching to get this franchise into baseball relevancy. Wisely taking their time to build the farm system, the Padres are poised to become a competitive team. If all breaks correctly, the team could be in the thick of it for years to come. Patience is the key here, and that is not the strong suit for a fan base starved for playoff baseball.

Mookie Betts is easily a top 10 talent in the game. The outfielder does everything well and is in the prime of his career at the age of 27. Adding him to the Padres’ roster would have given the team an additional 5-10 wins in the coming season. Would those extra wins guaranteed a playoff showing for the Padres? More importantly – would the extra wins and the presence of Betts provided a chance for the Padres to win it all? We will never know the answer to that question.

In the end, the Padres chose to continue to hoard their young talent. There are more fish in the sea as the Padres search for a player or players to make a splash this coming season. Time may be running out to improve the roster before the spring, but the Padres still have plenty of leverage to deal when the time is right for them. San Diego may have failed in landing a perennial All-Star in Mookie Betts, but they hardly lost traction in their quest to improve the franchise.

11 thoughts on “Did the San Diego Padres fail in not trading for Mookie Betts?

  1. 1 The Padres would have had to take Price too, in that case the price is wrong.
    2 Mookie would not have resigned, he wants to go to free agency.
    3 There’s no need to attack the author when commenting. Just state your case.
    4 Boston’s Bloom liked Myers, he had him in TB. this trade might have worked. So, it might actually be better to keep Myers and rebuild his value. I think he’ll be a 20/20 .265+ hitter this year. The angry villagers will be glad we kept him by the end of the year.
    5 There are better fish in the sea!

  2. If Price had not been part of what the Dodgers got I might have been upset but no way we should have taken on his deal, and it is no lock we could sign Betts after one year. The Dodgers can sign him, but Betts career avg outside of Fenway is THIRTY POINTS lower than his average in that ballpark, so they may have a tough decision if he hits in the .270’s. Our family is full of Red Sox fans and he didnt have a great year last year, nothing like his 2018 which was awesome.

  3. “There must not be mistakes in constructing a winning team.” HAHAHAHA. There have been too many mistakes to count, and we still do not have a winning team.
    “There are more fish in the sea as the Padres search for a player or players to make a splash this coming season. ” Really? Like whom? Which other 8 WAR player is available at the moment?
    Preller will irresponsibly sign Hosmer for 8 years, but will draw a line at trading 2nd level prospects as part of a deal to move on from Myers. That is crazy. They should have jumped at the chance to undo the Myers extension error. Instead they held tight to their prospects, most of whom will never amount to anything.
    A few years ago everyone was raving about how Boston got fleeced when it traded for Kimbrel. They gave up Manuel Margot, Logan Allen, Carlos Asuaje and Javier Guerra. People were breathlessly proclaiming that SD had just acquired their double-play combination for the next decade, an all-star CF and potential ace pitcher. 4 highly regarded prospects and what happened? Asuaje is playing in Korea? Guerra is trying to become a pitcher, Allen has not done anything, and Margot cannot hit RHP at all. In other words, they got crap for Kimbrel. Why? Because most prospects do not work out. People need to wake up and smell the coffee.
    They should have been very flexible about including money and prospects in order to dump Myers. Instead, Boston preferred not taking on a bad contract, and getting a player who actually can hit, instead of the cold oatmeal package of Margot/Naylor, Lucchesi/Quantrill and Myers that Preller was peddling.
    If this team finishes below .500 again Preller will be fired, and his inability to make this trade will be the reason why.

  4. If it came down to me, then Team/wins over egos/money mis-spent
    RF-Platoon Myers/Grisham
    CF-platoon Cordero/Margo
    LF Pham
    Most importantly, 1stB- Platoon Myers/Hosmer. Surreptitiously suggesting that Hosmer considers his opt-out in 2022.

  5. Short-term, it would have been *great* to have Mookie Betts. But, two things:
    1. Realistically, how much would he have helped them? I see the Padres (as they currently stand) winning 78-80 games this year, a decent improvement from 2019. Betts may have netted them an additional 6-8 wins, which would have netted them a wild-card birth — maybe.
    2. Long-term, they would have lost some solid prospects. So it would have been like the 1998 Kevin Brown trade *in the sense* that they got an elite player for one season, but then, they had to watch Derrick Lee prosper for other teams for over a decade.

    But the greater need was always starting pitching. Preller has missed out on this too many times. Perhaps the most egregious, in my view, was losing out on Corey Kluber. The Padres *easily* could have topped the package that Texas sent to Cleveland, but they did not. That was a big missed opportunity.

  6. I’m quite happy we did not get Betts. The price would have been too steep and it likely needed to include Price which meant a huge payroll liability for the next few years. Maybe it would have given us a taste of the playoffs… who knows. I’m happy we are staying the course and sticking to our plan. I think/hope it delivers a regular stream of playoff appearances.

    I’m actually surprised Preller didn’t go “all in” on this trade. I’m believing he likely tried his best to pull it off at any cost and that ownership said no to the additional payroll burden.

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