A.J. Preller is showing that he and the San Diego Padres are buyers. Yesterday he acquired RHP Trevor Rosenthal to help bolster the bullpen. Today he made moves to help the lineup.
This morning the Padres announced that they acquired Mitch Moreland from the Red Sox in exchange for prospects Hudson Potts and Jeisson Rosario.
— San Diego Padres (@Padres) August 30, 2020
Moreland is in the eleventh year of his career and on a one-year deal with a 2021 club option. He plays first base but will slot in as the designated for the Padres. DH is one of the holes on the Padres roster, as Josh Naylor, Ty France, Jurickson Profar, or Jorge Mateo have yet to lock it down.
His addition does add a better bat to an already intimidating lineup. This year he is posting career highs in OPS (1.177), wOBA (.479), and wRC+ (203). He is a lefty bat that crushes righties yet struggles against lefties.
He does fit in with the Padres in a few ways. He has increased his launch angle, and the results show as he ranks in the one-hundredth percentile in barrels and ninety-sixth percentile in expected slugging percent. He also is posting a career-low in chase rate, along with making less contact on pitches outside the zone. This means when he swings, its typically on pitches he can do something with. That low chase rate has also led to a 13.9% walk rate, which he is the second-highest in his career.
To acquire Moreland, the Padres had to part with their #16 and #19 prospects, Hudson Potts and Jeisson Rosario. Potts was the Padres 2016 first-round pick and played third and first. Obviously, with the money invest at those positions, it was hard to envision him finding playing time on the Padres. Rosario is a young outfielder with the capability of becoming a five-tool player. He started to struggle in 2019 at A+ ball, but he was only 19 and still has time to develop into a star.
Both players would have been eligible for the Rule 5 draft in the offseason and may not have made the 40-man roster to be protected. That shows where the team is at right now. A lot of big-league talent along with high tier prospects all need to be on the 40-man. This would have left two excellent prospects available to be taken away for nothing.