Hoyer Talks San Diego Outfielders, Relievers

Last year this time, Jed Hoyer was two weeks into his tenure as Padres GM. Now, he's attending the Orlando GM Meetings with a better sense of his club and a surplus of outfielders. He told MLBTR that he likes having outfield depth, but Cameron Maybin, Ryan Ludwick, Kyle Blanks, Will Venable, Scott Hairston, Chris Denorfia, Aaron Cunningham and Tony Gwynn won't all end up on next season's Opening Day roster and Hoyer did acknowledge that a trade is possible.

"Whenever you have surplus, if a team asks about a guy, you're always going to be willing to listen," Hoyer said.

The Padres like Venable in right and Maybin in center. Tony Gwynn's 2011 role has been unclear since the Marlins sent Maybin to San Diego. He is a non-tender candidate (like LudwickHairston and Denorfia) but Hoyer says Gwynn could be covering even more ground than usual at Petco Park next year.

"He's a guy we can use in all three outfield spots and going forward that's probably how we think of him," Hoyer said.

The Maybin trade left the Padres short on relievers, but don't expect immediate additions to the San Diego 'pen. The Padres are likely to replace the recently-traded Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica with other relievers later in the winter. As expected, Hoyer says the Padres will do a lot of their "damage" late in the offseason.


53 Responses to Hoyer Talks San Diego Outfielders, Relievers Leave a Reply

  1. Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

    Even with Webb/Muijica gone…I really like the Padres pen…Thatcher/Gomes/Russell/Frieri/Gregerson/Adams/Bell…Pretty good if you ask me…

    I wonder if the Pads could trade Corey Luebke or Tim Stauffer for Brett Lawrie as Tim pointed out yesterday…Definetly something to think about.

    • If Stauffer-for-Lawrie gets it done, I’ll pack his bags myself.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Stauffer was one of the better young pitchers in Baseball this season…He’s definetly going to be in the rotation next year…I wouldn’t be surprised to see him dangled for someone like Lawrie or Weeks who will be a free agent next year.

        • This would be a mistake. Leblanc for Weeks would be ok. Luebke and Stauffer are solid 3/4 type pitchers. I don’t think lawrie offers more than Antonelli’s potential. I realize many people are down on Antonelli but he got injured right when he was figuring it out.

          • Lowrie offers more than Antonelli IMHO, but he turns 27 in mid April. He is long past being a prospect and is more of a utility player now albeit a good one. You just dont trade starting pitching for utility players.

          • They are referring to Brett Lawrie of the Brewers (15th overall prospect by Baseball America) not Jed Lowrie.

          • They are referring to Brett Lawrie of the Brewers (15th overall prospect by Baseball America) not Jed Lowrie.

    • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

      I’m thinking the Padres are the only club who now has 4 legitimate closer candidates in their pen: Bell, Adams, Gregerson, and Frieri. That’s called a surplus of talent (as opposed to the surplus of mostly scrubs that Hoyer alluded to in their OF), and I’m thinking they will definitely seek to move Bell in order to trim payroll and add offense.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        I might even say that Gomes can close out games as well.

        • marinest21 5 years ago

          Just curious, who is Gomes?

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Brandon Gomes, one of the best relievers in Minor League Baseball in ’10. And he is 24 years old and Major League Ready.

          • He is 25 years old and in his 2nd season at the AA level after being drafted out of college in the 17th round. Not exactly top prospect material.

            He had a nice ERA, but he has been a middle reliever, not a closer in the minors.

            Italiano and Scribner from that Missions team are both much closer to the major leagues than Gomes.

          • disgruntledreader 5 years ago

            Way to continue to demonstrate your utter brilliance, websoul… Italiano is no longer with the organization.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Brandon Gomes, one of the best relievers in Minor League Baseball in ’10. And he is 24 years old and Major League Ready.

        • marinest21 5 years ago

          Just curious, who is Gomes?

        • marinest21 5 years ago

          nevermind, got it. although he has no experience above AA, gomes could possibly turn into a closer at the big league level. i thought we were only talking about the surplus of closer candidates in the big leagues. my mistake.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Gotcha. Well yeah the Padres are loaded. I’m against them trading Webb and Mujica, but it just shows their confidence in Frieri. Gregerson in my opinion is one of the top 5 late reliever non closers in Baseball.

        • marinest21 5 years ago

          nevermind, got it. although he has no experience above AA, gomes could possibly turn into a closer at the big league level. i thought we were only talking about the surplus of closer candidates in the big leagues. my mistake.

    • Gomes? He is 25 and had one save at AA last year.

      Italiano is much more likely to make the Padres roster at some point in 2011 than Gomes.

      Luebke may make the starting rotation in 2011 and Stauffer, a former 1st round pick and the Padres most effective starter down the stretch, are too valuable to the Padres to trade for a guy that is really just a utility player.

    • Webb’s stuff is closer quality, but let’s not yet anyone pretend he was higher than 4th on the depth cart and possibly lower than that.

      Frieri and Thatcher both probably passed Webb on the depth chart as it stands now with Russell definitely capable.

      The pen is fine as is and likely only needs a long man since Timmay is ending up in the rotation.

  2. I’d like to think they are going to wait for their ST performances before they decide…but my prediction is Maybin and Venable are definite roster spots, and that Ludwick’s history keeps him on team. As for 4th and 5th OF roles, I’d say Denorfia and Gwynn, with Blanks and Cunningham starting in the minors and Hairston getting non-tendered.

    • Drew Tweedie 5 years ago

      I like the starting OF as well as Gwynn and Denorfia coming off the bench for defense and offensive replacements, respectively. I was wondering if there’s a possible trade market for Ludwick that the Padres could cash in on. His performance with the Padres was well below expectations, but the team sounds more than happy to offer the man another year to prove himself offensively at Petco.

      • Well theres no reason to move him while his value is at low as it is. They are better off taking a chance and letting him start with the team and move him at the deadline if he has improved. A half of a season at PETCO hardly holds much weight compared to his offensive abilities hes shown over his career.

    • If the Padres do not make any more OF trades then I think your analysis is spot on.

    • Venable is an OPS+ 110 guy the past 2 years, when combined with his defense he could start for anyone. Remember Petco hurts offensive numbers badly.

      Outside of your assessment of Venable, I do agree with your final 5 OF’s although if they could get something for Denorfia they’d simply keep Cunningham around.

  3. Gwynn could be a good bench player, he reminds me Dave Roberts, but in much less sense…Gwynn needs to develop almost every aspect of his game, especially hitting and stealing bases more frequently.
    For K.BLanks I see him as the Padres next 1B, so this year he could be at AAA developing 1B skills and hitting.
    For Scott Hairston I see him on a Dodger Uniform, in exchange of a minor league pitcher.

    • Well the thing is that Gwynn’s defense in CF is so good that he is almost the quintessential 9th inning defensive replacement for a team.

    • Blanks will never be a big league hitter – his hands are too slow and he’s got huge holes in his swing.
      And with Gwynn, one problem about stealing bases is that you can’t steal first. But he is very solid defensively.

      • There are less holes in Blanks swing than in Adam Dunn’s swing. Blanks is 24 years old and he will play in the majors for years to come.

        His first appearance in the ML resulted in an ISO of .264, a .372 wOBA and a .250/.355/.514 slash line.

      • Hard to make that determination after 130 bad plate appearances. Way, way too early considering his minor league numbers

  4. I said it last off season and now it looks like an even better idea. The Braves should grab Blanks. He’s a moderately low buy with huge power potential and could settle into the Braves 5th or 6th spot with 20-25 home runs that the we so desperately need. I say go into ST with Prado at first or left depending on if Freeman or Blanks impresses more.

    Padres seem to like their pitching depth, Blanks for Delgado seems reasonable and Venable/Ludwick/Maybin outfield looks mighty hopeful with Cunningham having chances to break out as well.

    • 42214221 5 years ago

      BLANKS IS HAVING TJ SUJERY and we would want kimbrel or jurjens

      • Blanks HAD surgery already and is expected to be healthy by the start of camp.

        • disgruntledreader 5 years ago

          The first half of that sentence is certain, the second isn’t so much. They’re HOPING he’ll be ready for the start of camp, but there’s no certainty. He has yet to begin a throwing program.

      • Blanks HAD surgery already and is expected to be healthy by the start of camp.

    • The Padres are not going to trade Blanks. He is 23 and he is still a great prospect. He will likely start next season in AAA to get a chance to play everyday and then get the callup if anyone is struggling or gets hurt.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        … or perhaps when Adrian Gonzalez gets traded on July 31?

  5. Backup_Slider 5 years ago

    I hate to break it to Hoyer, but his surplus of outfielders includes one solid major leaguer, and that’s Ludwick provided that his 2010 season was indeed an aberration. He’s UZR-crazy if he thinks that Maybin alone or Maybin+Gwynn equates to a major league outfielder. The Padres simply can’t be taken seriously for 2011 until they add a proven major league bat to their outfield and another such bat somewhere else in their lineup.

    • Ludwick is a career .266 hitter with an average of 15 hr a season. Now he is playing in Petco and all those numbers will go down as evidenced by his horrendous performance both witht he bat and glove as a Padre.

      Even as bad as Ludwick is, he is still better with the bat than Gwynn. Other than his name, there is no reason to have Tony Gwynn on the roster.

      • Ryan Ludwick Career with RISP (.308 .388 .526 .915) with runners on base (.297 .373 .501 .874) RISP with 2 outs (.256 .364 .451 .815) With the bases loaded (.339 .391 .441 .832). One of the reasons they acquired Ludwick and it just didn’t work out. Not that I overly emphasize projections however, I think they do have hold some value. For example, Bill James projections for Ryan Ludwick for 2011 in PETCO (.261 .333 .461) 23 HR’s 70 runs 85 RBI in 144 G 553 PA’s. Now is that over paying in today’s market? Only time will really tell and his numbers in 2010 mean nothing if he is successful next year.

        If Adrian stays, Ludwick is still the most reliable, proven option to protect Adrian, I think that’s the bottom line. While his defense looked like it also suffered, he had just come off a calf injury. His career UZR/150 (5.1). Sure maybe Ryan is starting to regress, but his defense should also profile much better in Petco park in LF as opposed to RF where the intend to play him. I also think saying he was “horrendous” regarding his defense or “glove” is going a little too far.

        If you look at his hit chart you will see that he is a pull hitter especially when it comes to home runs. Which is why I don’t believe it will totally dwarf his stats. I am sure that being in Petco and the NL West will affect his numbers but I also highly doubt he struggles like he did when he came over in the trade from the Cardinals. Ludwick’s average HR distance this year was just over 400 ft. which is better than Adrian Gonzalez’. There was a lot of pressure put on him after the trade and judging him solely on his short time with the Padres is not fair. I know, you are not JUST judging him on his short stay but I think you are being unfair.

    • woadude 5 years ago

      lol at the Padres being taken seriously, did anyone take them seriously last year? no and they won 90 games, please dont take them serious this year either and maybe they can win 2 more games and do what the Giants did and stun the world.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        And I’d go so far to say that if Hoyer had placed an appropiate level of emphasis on offense in their outfield they would have won the division going away.Therein lies the problem for the Padres fan in 2011- because the Padres were so close to making the postseason, Hoyer thinks what he’s doing is correct and thus he won’t make much of an effort to fix the offense. When I hear him describing Maybin as “perfect for our park” or something to that effect, I’m thinking “Boy, I’m sure glad that fella isn’t running my team.”. There’s such a thing as taking the “build the team to suit the home ballpark” philosophy too far, and right now that’s exactly what I see Hoyer doing. You can only implement that philosophy so far as half of your games are played somewhere else (where offense tends to be at a premium).Unless I see some attention to offense out of Hoyer before March rolls around, I’ll forecast that Padres will finish 3rd (or 4th) in the NL West and will find themselves dealing Adrian Gonzalez when July 31 rolls around. As of today, they are a few struggling hitters away from being the 2010 Mariners of 2011, only with a really loaded back end of their bullpen that puts what the 2010 Mariners had to shame.

    • Ohhhplease 5 years ago

      Why cant they be taken seriously? Is essentially the same roster as last year which went to game 162…only to lose to the eventual world champs.

      The combo of defense and pitching is still strong, still in a pitchers park for 81 games a year….to say “they can’t be taken seriously” is a silly statement made by what appears to be an uniformed mind.

    • You missed their best outfielder in your post: Venable. OPS+ 110 and above average defense in RF.

      I do think you’re having problems accounting for park effects in your analysis, their offense was not terrible last year and things should already be improved in LF, CF and a natural progression at 3B.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        Venable’s career MLB splits (50% of which were accumulated in 2010) scream “platoon guy” at best.

        AVG/OBP/SLG
        vs LHP: .223/.303/.280
        vs RHP: .259/.331/.451

        I’d be interested to see his MiLB splits, but, alas, minorleaguesplits.com is down, as it has been for some time.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        Venable’s vs LHP splits have been terrible so far as a big leaguer. At best, it seems that he could be a decent platoon guy.

  6. Please tell me that Gwynn is not coming back. He could be a defensive replacement, a fifth OF, but he is certainly not good enough to crack the top four when you have Venable, Ludwick, Maybin, Cunningham, and Denorfia.

    • DTogo 5 years ago

      I can tell you two reasons Gwynn not coming back. One is money Gwynn is going to make 1 million this year. The Padres will not pay a 5th OF that much money. Two have you looked at his stats a .204 AVG and a OBP of .304. He as good as gone and if they keep Gwynn the Padres need to get their heads checked.

  7. Sd_brain 5 years ago

    i like how the pads are going after young unproven talent with maybin. I wonder if they could get brandon wood, he might not be difficult to trade for due to his major league numbers.

  8. We should at least see if Towers will entertain offers from us about Upton. That guy has a contract that we can afford. I know… won’t happen. But still, if you offered the DBacks a deal centered around Luebke, Gwynn/Ludwick/Durango/Cunningham/Deno, and a lower level prospect, he’s got to take that into account. Then, we’d have Upton, Maybin, Venable as our outfield stable for several years.

    Then, they can dump Adrian and Bell for the highest-rated prospects we can get. Hopefully as soon as possible. Agon trades should include at least Kelley/Lowrie, Castro/Cashner/BJackson, CSale/Flowers while Bell (plus a nice prospect) to potentially land us a frontline ace prospect.

    • You never know with KT. Heck he just gave Blum a 2 year deal.

      That being said, Upton won’t happen in SD because the farm system can’t get it done as of yet when competing with Boston and NYY (whose farms are better than they have been over the past few seasons)

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