A report from Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe states that the San Diego Padres have been and are currently scouting Pablo Sandoval. The switch-hitting third baseman has missed some games recently with a back injury, but appears to be over the issue.
— Nick Cafardo (@nickcafardo) March 28, 2016
This seems plausible since the Padres were actively pursuing Pablo Sandoval last off-season prior to the third baseman signing in Boston. His tenure as a Red Sox got off to an immediate bumpy start as he reported to camp last year over weight and had a horrible season. Sandoval hit .245 with 10 home runs last year and amassed a -0.9 WAR rating. He is owed $77.4 million for the next four seasons (with a buyout for the 2020 season). Not very appealing at all. He also has appeared to lost his starting job to Brock Holt.
His contract is hefty and the fact the Padres are scouting him seems strange. Perhaps the two team would exchange bad contracts. James Shields and Matt Kemp come to mind. Shields for Sandoval doesn’t make sense to me as Shields still can be serviceable and is owed less money ($65 million for three years). Kemp is owed $73 million (after the Dodgers pay their $15 million owed) for the next four years and his contract is similar to Sandoval as far as tenure and amount owed.
A Kemp for Sandoval deal seems strange as well. The Sox already have plenty of outfield options and David Ortiz is locked as the teams DH. He is in his retirement year, so Kemp could be an option for the Red Sox long-term at DH. Something that would be beneficial for Kemp and his career. He can still hit the ball with authority but his defense has been on a steady decline. Still, he would be a strange addition to a Sox team that already has plenty of personality.
A.J. Preller is making moves. The Padres will not stand pat. They have options on the trade front and we could very easily see a repeat of last season. He could very well pull of a deal like 2015 when he acquired Melvin Upton Jr. and Craig Kimbrel the day before the season started. The Red Sox are a likely trade partner, but in what regard?
Pablo Sandoval would provide some versatility, but in reality the Padres already have a more than capable third baseman in Yangervis Solarte. He is much cheaper and has been trending upwards with his offense. Sandoval might be better defensively than Solarte, but that might be about it. Of course Kung-Fu Panda does have the post season track record, but that hardly outweighs his offensive woes and conditioning concerns.
I surely hope the Padres are not looking for Panda. The San Diego Zoo is already full up on wildlife and we by no means need another addition to America’s Finest City. A.J. Preller is wise. I have faith in him. Do you Padres fans? Sound off? Would you like Sandoval on the Padres team?