Why signing Joc Pederson makes sense for Padres

Mandatory Credit: USA Today Sports

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Mandatory Credit: USA Today Sports

If the Padres non-tender Tommy Pham, could signing Joc Pederson make sense?

Teams must tender players eligible for arbitration by Wednesday, December 2.

Ahead of the deadline, there have been rumblings that Tommy Pham could be a non-tender candidate for the Padres.

According to reports, the left fielder recently underwent his third surgery this year. The most recent was to repair torn cartilage in his left wrist. Pham isn’t swinging a bat, but he indicated that his grip was improving.

The 32-year-old also underwent surgery to repair a broken hamate bone in the same hand. He also suffered a stab wound outside of a nightclub. Add to that a generally disappoint first season in San Diego, and the Padres could be considering other options. Pham is under team control for only one more season, so there is some incentive to find someone younger and someone they can hang onto for a longer period of time.

A free agent the Padres should be very familiar with is former Dodgers’ outfielder Joc Pederson. At 28 years of age, the former 11th round pick of the 2010 MLB Draft led the Dodgers with a .382 batting average in the 2020 postseason. The acquisition and extension of Mookie Betts made Pederson expendable.

He was moved out of his natural leadoff spot in the batting order, dropping down to the bottom of the order while spending a good chunk of the season in the DH role. If the Padres move on from Pham, Pederson would be an excellent replacement while keeping the franchise within their desired budget.

Pederson is a year removed from a 36 home run and 74 RBI’s season. Not much stock should be put into his 2020 numbers, given his diminished role during the regular season. However, Pederson shined under the bright lights of the postseason.

He also has a robust .917 career OPS at Petco Park, which is significantly better than the .814 OPS at Dodger Stadium.

The Padres lost a fair amount of depth in the outfield after trading away Franchy Cordero, Edward Olivares, and Taylor Trammell this last year. As noted, Pham is set to hit unrestricted free agency regardless if he remains with the Padres in 2021. Wil Myers is under contract for two more years, so the addition of Pederson on a multi-year deal would set the Padres up well for their competitive window.

6 thoughts on “Why signing Joc Pederson makes sense for Padres

  1. Tendering Tammy was just another stupid move by Preller. Especially for the 8 mil> Joc or even bringing Renfroe back would be so much cheaper. not they they are much of an improvement but both are much better defensively and offensively and base running I dought any player Sucks as much as Tammy does!

  2. I think offering a contract to Pham wasn’t in our best interests. Likely investing 8M in him is a gamble. I think we could have replaced that with a better alternative. Maybe they’ll structure something more incentive based.

    I’m not against Pederson here as a starter or maybe he’s the 4th outfielder who spells others and gets regular ABs. The cost would determine that final decision.

    I like Renfro and his pop. I wasn’t a fan of his strikeouts and all round game. He could be a cheap 5th outfielder/DH should he be available for <2M on a one year deal. The alternative will be one of our young speedsters getting their shot in the Bigs.

  3. Makes no sense.
    The club already has a regular player who simply cannot hit left handed pitching, it doesn’t need another.

  4. If you’re going to consider a strike out artist bring Hunter Renfro back: more power, more defense, stronger arm and cheaper.

    1. Not a fan of bringing Froe back, but in this case it’s t would be a better option. Perhaps Bobby Dickerson and Dameon Easley can work the magic Andy Green couldn’t.

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