If Dylan Cease is made available by the Chicago White Sox, then the Padres should be very interested.
The San Diego Padres need pitching.
This cannot be said enough.
The current roster is full of question marks when it comes to the pitching department. The Padres will likely lose Blake Snell, Michael Wacha, Seth Lugo, and Nick Martinez from the starting pitching department. The team is also prepared to part ways with closer Josh Hader and setup man Luis Garcia.
The issue for the Padres relies more on financial constraints than anything else. They need to save money. The team has over a billion dollars committed to its offensive players. Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish are also signed long-term. There is just very little financial flexibility with this roster.
At this point, the Padres will need to acquire young pitching talent that is proven or take a chance on some unheralded pitchers who are free agents. The latter is a scary thought when you are talking about a team with World Series aspirations. The Padres will likely need to empty the farm system in calculated trades to add pitching depth to their roster.
The Chicago White Sox are coming off an equally disappointing season than the Padres in 2023. The front office was reworked, and several moves are predicted in the future for this franchise. Nothing seems imminent, but there are reports the team is talking to several franchises about a few of their players. Among the players reportedly being talked about is right-handed pitcher Dylan Cease.
If Cease is indeed being shopped by the White Sox, then the Padres are surely going to be front and center.
The 27-year-old from Georgia is signed for the next two years and is in the second year of his arbitration years. He made $5.7 million last year and could get a slight increase in that. In today’s market, for his potential, this is a great deal. This is the kind of contract the Padres are surely craving. Cease is a young pitcher performing for his future. He will want to be paid in the winter of 2026 and is sure to put in his best effort for the next two years.
The Cubs drafted Cease in the sixth round of the 2014 draft. He was traded to the north side of Chicago to the White Sox in 2017 and debuted in 2019 at the major league level. There are over 650 major league innings on this pitcher, who seemed to come into his own a few years ago.
Cease finished second in Cy Young voting in 2022 after going 14-8 with a 2.20 ERA and a 1.418 WHIP in 32 starts and 184 innings pitched. The right-handed pitcher struck out 227 but walked 78 batters, which was the American League high for the season. He still had a dominant year, and he was predicted to further breakout in 2023.
This past year, his numbers dipped as Cease struggled with his command and the usage of his slider. Dylan Cease still threw 177 innings and made 33 starts for the Sox. He has proven to be quite durable, as the pitcher has made over 32 starts in the last three seasons. The Padres need an innings eater with potential, and Cease fits the bill perfectly.
The cost for Cease with be big. He is under control, and despite his down year in 2023, is one of the brighter young pitchers in the game.
Thankfully, San Diego has rebuilt this farm system and has several men ascending within the ranks. It would take multiple top-10 players in the Padres system and likely a young arm like Adrian Morejon to get a deal done. The Padres would easily package their prospects for immediate help. Cease would provide that.
His salary is a bit costly for the Padres at the moment, but they can adjust. The potential is too high with Cease, who would immediately slide into the top of the rotation alongside Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove. The Padres would be willing, but Chicago will be hard-pressed to deal their young pitcher. The Padres will need to overpay. They can afford to do it and frankly have no place to say anything. Their inflated roster has put them in a situation where they have limited opportunities.
Go out and pay the asking price for Cease, and then make a few more signings or trades. There is no time like the present, A.J. Preller.
James was born and raised in America’s Finest City. He is a passionate baseball fan with even more passion towards his hometown Padres. Editor-In-Chief of EastVillageTimes.com. Always striving to bring you the highest quality in San Diego Sports News. Original content, with original ideas, that’s our motto. Enjoy.