With the start of the 2017 calendar year, the San Diego Padres will further trudge on in an attempt to build their roster for the upcoming season. It is a slow process and things will pick up as spring training is right around the corner.
The hard work has already been laid down with the Padres’ superior minor league system in place. The team does need to make some more additions to the 2017 roster, and the current free agent market could be the place for that. There is no reason to get too excited though, as there are plenty of options still available on the market, and the team will strike when the time is right.
The Padres’ system is widely considered a top-5 minor league system, and that will only improve as the young players within the system mature and grow as players.
At this point the team will only add veterans to help develop young players, with the hope that these older players can establish value to be flipped for yet more prospects.
In recent days, Ken Rosenthal indicated that the Padres are still holding talks with Jake Peavy, Doug Fister, and Jered Weaver, though he notes that Weaver is considered a long shot at this point. The Padres are indeed still shopping for talent.
It is no secret that the team needs pitching as the current staff has plenty of question marks. Luis Perdomo, Clayton Richard, Jhoulys Chacin, Jarred Cosart, Cesar Vargas, Christian Friedrich, Paul Clemens, and Tyrell Jenkins are all competing for five spots. Only Perdomo seems like a lock to be in the rotation for 2017, though Chacin and Richard are also safe bets to begin the year on the staff, assuming they are healthy and have no issues in the spring.
Adding a few more veteran arms is not a bad thing. Jenkins and Vargas have minor league options left and can start in Tripe-A if need be. The bullpen is another possible option for the influx of starting pitchers. Peavy would be a great addition simply for the nostalgic aspect. He is only the shadow of his former self, so fans shouldn’t anticipate another Cy Young season, but he could be fun to watch in a Friars’ uniform.
The Padres will begin their bargain hunting shortly. Don’t expect a Jose Bautista or Mark Trumbo, but the team will kick the tires on players like Ben Revere, Adam Lind, Edwin Jackson, and so on. If each veteran player fails to win a major league job or major league contract, then the Padres could step in and try to pick them off the scrap heap. Not the most appealing of prospects for Padres’ fans, but for a team trying to gain value and build for the future, it is a necessity.
Besides starting pitchers, the Padres will look for shortstop help, third base help, and possibly a left-handed hitting first baseman/outfielder. That all could change as well, as the team has plenty of viable players that could be flipped in the coming weeks. Yangervis Solarte, Brandon Maurer, Cory Spangenberg, Travis Jankowski, Alex Dickerson, Brad Hand, and Ryan Buchter all have value, and if a team offers the right package, the Padres and A.J. Preller will not turn their backs.
Expect some bargain hunting to be done shortly, and hopefully the team can strike it rich with a player that has extra motivation to perform. These last additions to the roster for the 2017 season are what make or break a team. Not that the Padres have Championship aspirations just yet, but they do want to continue the positive cultivation of the “Padres Way” that has always been missing with the baseball team from San Diego. Bargain shopping can be fun and rewarding if done correctly.
With the recent loss of the Chargers to the city of San Diego, the Padres have even more pressure on them to complete their rebuild the correct way and for the long haul. There will be no rush, because once that talent starts to arrive, it will be in continuous waves that will constantly replenish the franchise. For now, a few veterans sprinkled in here and there will only help in the growing process. The shopping spree should begin shortly, and with that, we will have a better idea of what the 25-man roster will be come April. Stay tuned.