Free Agent Stock Watch: Vicente Padilla

Vicente Padilla wrapped 2009 up in style, turning in two strong postseason starts after a big finish to the regular season in L.A. The result: a one-year $5.025MM deal. Padilla's about to hit free agency again, but he's out for the season, so he won't head into the offseason with the same momentum he did a year ago. Here's the outlook for the Dodgers righty:

The Pros

  • Padilla posted 8.0 K/9 with 2.3 BB/9 and a 4.07 ERA.
  • His average fastball velocity (92.4 mph) hasn't been this high since 2005.
  • He doesn't turn 33 until later this month, so he's still relatively young even though he has 12 years of big league experience.
  • The neck injury that has sidelined Padilla probably won't require surgery.
  • He is projected to be a Type B free agent, so he won't cost a draft pick.
  • Padilla's tenure in Texas ended badly a year ago, but he has since earned Joe Torre's trust, which reflects well.

The Cons

  • He'll miss the rest of the season with a bulging disk in his neck.
  • A forearm injury sidelined Padilla earlier in the season, so he made just 16 total starts in 2010.
  • Padilla didn't replicate the strong finish he had a year ago and posted a 10.13 ERA in his final three starts.

The Verdict

The Dodgers don't seem likely to offer arbitration, since they didn't make such offers to Padilla or any other free agents a year ago. Ted Lilly and Hiroki Kuroda are hitting free agency, too, so the Dodgers will be looking for starting pitching this winter. Some teams may shy away from Padilla because he missed so much time with injuries, but his strong performance should be enough to earn him $3-4MM on a one-year deal this offseason, whether it's with the Dodgers or not.

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10 Comments on "Free Agent Stock Watch: Vicente Padilla"

4 years 11 months ago

pro: he looks like a mexican vampire.
con: he is a turrible teammate, and head case.

4 years 11 months ago

How is how his career ended in Texas even mentioned as a pro regardless of Torre’s opinion? The con is that he can self-destruct: gets moody and takes it upon himself to throw at people intentionally. I like the guy, but I didn’t like how he left the Rangers and I think you really can’t tell if that behavior is completely behind him. I wouldn’t give him a long term deal.

4 years 11 months ago

I think he’s more well-behaved when the opposing team can retaliate against him. For this reason, maybe he’s better suited for the NL.

4 years 11 months ago

Con: He’s a crazy sonofabitch that’s liable to implode at any given moment.

4 years 11 months ago

From my perspective, that’s not a con. :-)

Anyway, keep him on one-year deals and you’re probably fine.

4 years 11 months ago

If an AL teams signs him, they better prepare to get into brawls because of his propensity to throw at batters.The Texas players basically threw him off the team because he continued to throw at batters, even after it was explained to him, that in doing so it only put his teamates at risk of retaliation. He’s toned it down in the NL, because he has to bat, but it hasn’t completely stopped. Witness the Yankees series this past summer. A 2yr deal would be a smart signing, anything more would be a risk with this Jerk

4 years 11 months ago

A big con is the guy is a total jerk.

4 years 11 months ago

I hate this guy, they should pay him to go away forever.

4 years 11 months ago

One big “Pro” is that he throws an eephus pitch.

4 years 11 months ago

I would take him in Houston. The guy plays with passion. Yes, he had a bad situation in TEX, but he has thrived in LA. He will be inexpensive, like I said, I would take him for the Astros.