The Padres have claimed righty Zach Lee off waivers from the Mariners, Seattle announced. He had recently been designated for assignment.
Once considered a top-100 prospect leaguewide, Lee’s star has waned in recent years. He was acquired last year from the Dodgers in the deal that sent infielder Chris Taylor to Los Angeles. Lee was originally taken in the back end of the first round of the 2010 draft, back when current San Diego front office man Logan White was running the Dodgers’ drafts, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune notes on Twitter.
[RELATED: Updated Padres Depth Chart]
Still just 25, Lee briefly reached the majors in 2015. But he fell well shy of earning a return in the ensuing campaign. Over his 148 Triple-A innings in 2016, Lee scuffled to a 6.14 ERA with 6.5 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9. Lee was torched for 193 hits in that span, including 22 long balls, but it seems that the Pads have reason to believe they can get him back on track.
Grasping at straws again. But ’tis the season, so good luck, Padres.
Never been high on Lee even when he was a highly thought of prospect, but I’d rather take a chance on guys like him than having the like Richard/friedrich/Clemens all in rotation.
Hopefully for his sake he can maintain some semblance of a serviceable starter this year for the Pads back end of the rotation
Richard is probably coming back. With al the kids with limited innings so far, we need a veteran like Richard that can come in and pitch 180-200 innings. Friedrich and Clemens are both in the rotation at this point. Lee is minor league depth for us. I don’t think Preller is counting on him making the starting rotation out of spring training.
Richard hasnt pitched over 200 innings since 2012 and hasn’t topped 70 since.
Richard missed more than a year from June 2013 to Aug 2014 with shoulder pain and then the same TOS surgery that Tyson Ross had in mid-October. He made 4 starts in 2014 in the minors and 11 really good starts in the minors in in 2015 before he was signed by the Cubs in July 2015 as a reliever. He returned to that role in early 2016 and showed pretty clearly that using him as a LOOGY was the wrong utilization of his skills. After signing with the Padres in August 2016 Richard showed he was better suited to being a starter and ready for the rigors of the job by putting up a 2.41 ERA and nearly 6 innings per start. I have no doubt that he can make 30+ starts and put up 180 IP. None of the young guys other than Perdomo and maybe Friedrich has built up their innings to the point they can do that.
Philip – Curious what you see that makes you think Lee is, in any way, a better option than Friedrich? Friedrich was always a better prospect, developed more, and was better in the majors last year than Lee was in Triple-A.
Free starting pitcher, why not?
Because he’s bad
Lee is Exhibit A in the in gallery of first round draft picks who washed out.
Brien Taylor says hello.
PRINT THE WORLD SERIES TICKETS NOW!!!!!!!!!
Haha, someone’s always making this comment when moves like these happen.
If he can throw 148 innings of 6.14 baseball for us he will be a welcome addition.
Now that’s funny right there
Lol @ your name and comment. Hey I know how you feel! Not with baseball cause I’m a diehard Doyer fan but I am a Chargers fan in these very hard times 🙁
148 innings of 6.14 baseball. That would make a little more sense if this was the Rockies and not the Padres!
I’m sure those were completely arbitrary numbers that he pulled out of the air, and they have nothing at all to do with his 2016 stats in the PCL…
Actually, those are his 2016 PCL stats
I saw Lee pitch in a game at Citi Field back in July 2015, and after he was pulled in the 5th inning you could hear Honeycutt(??) screaming at him in the dugout that he was a bleeping bleep (gato?) who had no balls and would never be seen in a Dodger uniform again unless he pulled his head out of his @$$. I think this is a good pickup for us. Lee is a groundball pitcher and that is something that we need more of. He will come into ST with no pressure and gets a chance to work with Balsley and reunite with Logan White. If he rebounds, GREAT. If nothing else he provides depth in the minors if he has options and we have lots of 40 man roster spots right now.
Cool story bro.
This never happened.
It definitely happened. I really dislike the Dodgers, so I was laughing pretty hard when I heard that happen to Lee. Still have the ticket because it’s the highest priced one I have ever had at $415.00. Section 121 Row 2. Came with access to the Delta lounge with free food. Absolutely amazing seats for a blowout game. Went to NYC for a Content Marketing conference. Got invited to a Yankees game against the Orioles and then the Mets game by one of my favorite digital marketing bloggers. That was an amazing week all around.
That sounds hilarious! Maybe all that shouting got in his head or something.
Rebound from what though? He was always an overrated prospect who was ranked high based on potential but never performed even in the minors
Lottery ticket, so why not.
Wonder if LSU will still honor his football scholarship. Pull the Russell Wilson, Brandon Weeden, and countless other QBs that couldn’t make it in pro baseball.
We have nothing to lose….and NOBODY thinks this will make us contenders. We are 2-3 years away from that at best. Give the kid a chance…we usually do well with reclamation projects in the past.
Someone has to fill out roster
Along with the top three Rule 5 choices.
I remember when the Dodgers & Cubs couldn’t reach a deal for Dempster bc they refused to include Lee. The Cubs ended up getting Kyle Hendricks from the Rangers instead. I’m glad the Dodgers FO made him untouchable
The problem with relying on 20-20 hindsight is you are going to walk into plenty of walls.
Wow, that projected Padres rotation has to be one of the WORST ever. When a washed out prospect with an ERA over 6 in AAA ball is projected as your 5th starter, you are in a really bad shape.
Where did you read that he was projected as our 5th starter? He isn’t even guaranteed an MLB 25 man roster spot. He was designated for assignment off the Mariners 40 man roster, so the Padres can still put him in the minors as long as we keep him on our 40 man roster.
He’s probably going to start out as just minor league depth. Maybe as the season goes on, they’ll call him up to see how he does, but he’s not going to be in the rotation on opening day.
He never developed an out-pitch unfortunately. His stuff was always bits and pieces, without much velocity to make up for it. Still rooting for the guy, after luring him away from College Football, he’s always had some intrigue. Just couldn’t quite take that next step.
Good control though. He’s just controlling pretty average stuff.