Eric Hosmer Signing Brings a Domino Effect With it for Rest of Team

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With the signing of Eric Hosmer, the San Diego Padres will need to restructure their team a bit.

The slick-fielding first baseman will surely play everyday, as he has proven he is more than capable of doing so. Hosmer is a presence in the middle of a brand new Padres’ lineup and a left-handed bat that the team has needed for a long time. It is an exciting time to be a fan of the San Diego Padres.

In bringing in Hosmer, the Padres will now have some roster shuffling to do. There is presently an excess of outfielders, as Travis Jankowski, Alex Dickerson, Franchy Cordero and Matt Szczur will all battle it out for one or possible two spots on the roster.

Hosmer will be in San Diego for at least five years, so there will be some effecst to the whole structure of the team and its minor league system. There is no longer a need for a first baseman of the future, as Hosmer will easily be in place when Fernando Tatis Jr., Mackenzie Gore, Cal Quantrill, Luis Urias and company hit the major leagues.

There are some direct issues that will need to be resolved though. General manager A.J. Preller has shown the ability time and time again to adjust on the fly. With the signing of Hosmer, the trade winds are surely blowing through the Padres’ front office.

Here is a glimpse at some things to look for immediately within the Padres’ franchise.

Wil Myers will move to left field or right field

This should not be an issue, as Myers has a history in the outfield. He has proven to be athletic as he played center for the team in 2015. That experiment failed, but Myers still showed some ability out there. Perhaps a move to the outfield will give him more time to focus on hitting. Hosmer and Myers are old friends from the Royals’ system and the addition of the left-handed hitter could be really beneficial for Myers’ psyche. If Hosmer can connect with Myers, Wil could be in store for a huge year.

Jose Pirela will return to the infield in some capacity

The team has already been working Pirela at second base in the spring, so it seems he will be given an opportunity there. He could also backup Hosmer at first and get time in the outfield. He has proven to be versatile and could be a great utility man. However, Pirela was the Padres best offensive player last year and should obviously be given an opportunity to be in the lineup everyday. Carlos Asuaje and Pirela could be used in a platoon of some sort at the start of the year. The Cactus League season will dictate a lot about what the Padres will do in 2018 in this regard.

Credit: MiLB

Franchy Cordero loses opportunity, or does he?

Franchy Cordero might have been able to earn some playing time if the Padres were unable to sign Hosmer. It was looking like he and Jose Pirela would probably platoon out there, but that all changed on Saturday night. Eric Hosmer and Wil Myers are the meat of the lineup. They will both play each and every day. Pirela could be shifted to the infield for at bats, but what about Cordero? Franchy has probably earned a serious look at the major league level, but the youngster cannot just sit on the bench. He needs at bats. Can Cordero get enough playing time as the fourth outfielder? Spelling Renfroe and Manuel Margot could give him some playing time, but probably not enough to keep him in the majors.

Where does this leave Josh Naylor?

Naylor is a left-handed hitting first baseman who will now need to shift to the outfield in order to gain playing time. He was witnessed getting work done in the outfield this week in an attempt to see if he can handle the position. The Padres like Naylor but, with the addition of Hosmer, he has no opening on the Padres now or in the future. The young Canadian’ outfielder could be used as trade bait. He has progressed very well for his age and could really blossom in 2018 with the bat. The power is coming for this young man. Giving Preller a viable trade chip is not a bad thing.

20 thoughts on “Eric Hosmer Signing Brings a Domino Effect With it for Rest of Team

  1. It will be a shame if Priela doesn’t get at least 500 to 600 PA’s. He is not only their best hitter, he is the most intriguing and entertaining to watch. How incredibly sad if he is bumped by some combination of Renfroe, Myers, and Hosmer.

  2. Hate to see the young guys get punked. For the price, Hosmer better be super productive. I sit behind the Padres dugout and I will verbally be holding him accountable.

  3. The Pads need all of the offense they can get in order to compete in the west…as much as I enjoy watching Asuaje play…they gotta play Pierla at second to keep his bat in the lineup…Headly will be fine at 3rd…great OBP,and still a good glove…the odd man out will be Spangy…who deserves to play,but won’t be able to…

    1. Have you seen Pirela play 2B? If you had, then you wouldn’t be hoping for him to get any time at 2B. Asuaje may not be the starting 2B. Spangenberg likely gets that call. Long term Urias is the 2B and that may start as soon as June of this year which would mean Asuaje and Pirela will be gone, because Urias is going to start from the day he is called up and Spangenberg has more of a shot as a utility guy than either of the other two.

  4. I’d love to see Pirela get a shot at 3B. Headley should be moved asap. This will open 2B for Asuaje who handled that spot very well last year.

    1. Asuaje was a mediocre player. Below league average offense (88 OPS+) and slightly below average defense (-3 DRS). He is not the future at 2B for the Padres. He probably doesn’t even start the season as the starting 2B. That nod will probably go to Spangenberg if he has a good spring.

      Pirela is terrible with the glove. He can hit and always has been able to hit, but he is so bad on defense that no team was willing to give him much of a shot. He won’t play 3rd at all this season. If Villanueva makes the team he will be the platoon for Headley against tough lefties. If not, then Spangenberg will spell Headley 20 or 30 games.

  5. Naylor is officially trade bait, wonder what he might help bring in. I imagine the same goes for Franmil Reyes who could be useful with another good year.

    Cordero is basically in preparation if Renfroe has a bad year again (or shows no improvement). But Cordero is still working on his own schtick so that’ll take time in El Paso. Still a little backup in the event of a Renfroe fail is nice.

    Pirela becomes the “Solarte” class Super Sub and primary Pinch hitter. But at the same time Spangenberg and Asuaje know this year that they won’t just be given the starting job, they’ll have to earn it now.

    1. I disagree about Naylor, he is 20.6 years old, didn’t really light AA on fire, with a .666 OPS. He will start there this season. He has not really shown his Raw Power in games yet. His hit tool is below average, he is a big boy, and is a DH/1B only kind of guy. These kind of players often don’t make it. Naylor is not in the Top 10 1B prospects in the league yet and he maybe will never be there. He had to do 2 years at High A ball also.

      We should draft a HS kid who hits LH with better tools to bring along at 1B anyway.

    2. Either Spangenberg or Asuaje will have the starting job at 2B. Probably Spangenberg. He is just a little better. Pirela has no chance of getting the starting nod at 2B. If he makes the team at all, it will be as the 4th OF/utility guy/pinch hitter. His defense is horrible. Awful. Horrendous. Really, really, really bad at any position.

  6. Padres lineup is all of a sudden stacked with: 1. Margot 2. Freddy glavis 3. Hosmer 4. Wil Myers 5. Renfreo 6 hedges 7. Chase headly 8. Priela (2nd base) 9 pitcher. I hope our pitcher develop fast because this team is ready to win NOW! AJ preller for president!

    1. Stacked? That lineup and their overall offense will be very lucky not to be in the bottom third, if not the bottom 10-15% on offense. Furthermore, their defense will be even worse now that Wil is in left, and Hosmer rated as THE worst at first over the last two years.

      1. He won a gold glove and you think the defense is worse. I hope you don’t claim to be a Padres fan. Because you no nothing about the team.

        1. He won multiple gold gloves, in fact, but that is entirely subjective. A more objective measure, although less than perfect, are the “sabermetric” stats like UZR and DRS, which, as I said, had him “rated as THE worst at first over the last two years.” So pick what you want, what I said was 100% factual. So it is not just *me* that thinks this, it is the conclusion of those that measure this for a living. So there’s that … Also, speaking of measures, how do you measure who is a true “Padres fan”? A true fan wants their team to do what is right and best for the team, while a “no nothing” (sic) fan is unobjective, and merely wants their team to do something. So, after all is said and done, I guess you, and all that you *no* get to judge me as a *no* nothing fan.

          1. Defensive metrics like DRS or UZR for 1B are pretty useless. They only include balls in play off the bat, not balls thrown to the 1B. They also don’t take into account men on base which effects a 1B defensive placement as he has to hold on the runner. A 1B like Hosmer that plays 150+ games will take 1000-1200 more balls thrown to him than those hit towards him. Hosmer is by far the best at picking the ball in the game. Look at scoops on Fangraphs. That counts the balls in the dirt that the 1B catches. No one else is close. He will save the infield 30 errors a season.

            Sometimes I think that people need to actually watch a few hundred games before making statements based on defensive metrics just to see how a player actually performs. Last season the best OF according to UZR and DRS was Mookie Betts, who is very good, but he didn’t come close to Byron Buxton when it came to Outs Above Average, a non-subjective measure of defensive performance.

            This upcoming season StatCast will start releasing defensive stats on infielders and you will get a chance to see how they actually perform in terms of real range and catch probability based on the velocity of the batted ball and the number of feet they moved to make a catch and other defensive information teams have had since 2015, but fans will be seeing for the first time.

      2. How can you say that? Am I blind or deaf did he not win a AL Gold Glove last year and a total of 4 Times. Just asking…. Lol

        1. Gold gloves are not accurate. They are based on reputations, not facts. Rafael Palmiero won a gold glove after playing 34 games in one year. Hosmer did win four GG’s, and did win last year, but had a NEGATIVE rating, in fact, there were a dozen AL first basemen who rated better (that is just the one league) and for the past two years he was dead last overall!

      3. Myers is an average defender in the corners. He will be fine. He is certainly better in LF then Pirela will ever hope to be.

        If you are looking at defensive metrics like DRS or UZR for 1B, just stop. They only include balls in play off the bat, not balls thrown to the 1B. At 1B a regular like Hosmer that plays 150+ games will take 1000-1200 more balls thrown to him than those hit towards him. Hosmer is by far the best at picking the ball in the game. No one else is close. He will save the infield 30 errors a season.

        Fangraphs has the Padres at 10 WAR better than last season with the addition of Hosmer. I think that they will be even better than that because of things like Hosmer’s picking ability and how much adding Galvis to the infield defense with groundball pitchers like Richard, Perdomo, Mitchell and Ross if he makes the team. I also think that by mid season Urias, who is both a better hitter and fielder than Spangenberg or Asuaje, will take over at 2B.

    2. Pirela won’t start at 2B. He might get some garbage time there. Maybe even a few starts as a backup if Spangenberg or Asuaje gets hurt or traded. But his defense is atrocious. Not just kind of bad. Hide your head in your hands bad.

      Margot, Myers, Hosmer, Headley, Renfroe, Hedges, Spangenberg, Galvis is my guess as of today. Look at how well Myers has hit out of the 2 hole.

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