Padres News: James Shields Trade Rumors Heating Up

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It appears that the trade market for James Shields has indeed picked up like some speculated it would. As contending teams head into the 2016 season they realize through lack of depth or injuries that they do indeed need starting pitching. Shields, although coming off a bad season has a great track record and is also an excellent leader in the club house.

Both the Orioles and Red Sox have spoken to the Padres as Heyman indicates, but nothing seems close at the moment. The Los Angeles Angels also make sense as the team desperately needs starting pitching. C.J. Wilson will start the season on the D.L. for the Halos and Jered Weaver is barely throwing mid 80’s with his fastball. Both pitchers are in the last year of their respected contracts with the team as well.

The Red Sox make the most likely landing spot for Shields but the Padres already raided the Sox farm system in the deal for Craig Kimbrel. It is not known if the two teams can agree to another deal for minor league talent.

There has been some speculation that the Padres and Red Sox could discuss a Pablo Sandoval for James Shields deal. That ship has likely sailed as Sandoval has done nothing to boost his trade value. He once again showed up to camp out of shape this year and has not hit during the Spring. Brock Holt appears to have the inside track on the starting third base job.

Dealing Shields for Sandoval would not makes sense. Sandoval is due $77.4 million on his contract for the next four seasons plus a $5 million dollar buy out. Shields is owed $65 million with an opt out clause after this season. He could conceivably opt out and only be owed his $21 million for this season. I do not see the Padres taking Shields and flipping him for a more expensive player who is owed money for a longer duration. The Padres are trying to get younger and free themselves of salary, not add more.

The deal would have to be for prospects with the Sox, and that is where it gets tough. Obviously the team from Boston can afford Shields salary, but they know the Padres are willing to pay some of it. In fact John Heyman acknowledge this.

The next week should be interesting as trade rumors start to heat up. Teams need to trim their rosters to 25 and 40 and with that, many deal can be facilitated. It sounds like A.J. Preller is at it again and a deal or two might take place. Stay tuned, it could be a very interesting 10 days.

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