MLB Trade Rumors » » San Diego Padres 2017-12-17T14:55:10Z Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Could Have Interest In Adrian Gonzalez]]> 2017-12-17T03:22:38Z 2017-12-17T03:22:38Z
  • The Padres will consider a reunion with Gonzalez if they’re unable to reel in free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer, Bob Nightengale of USA Today suggests (Twitter link). Gonzalez was a franchise player in San Diego from 2006-10, slashing .288/.374/.514 with 161 home runs in 3,425 plate appearances and earning three All-Star nods.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Designate Jose Ruiz For Assignment]]> 2017-12-15T18:20:57Z 2017-12-15T18:15:37Z The Padres announced that they’ve designated right-hander Jose Ruiz for assignment. His spot on the 40-man roster will go to shortstop Freddy Galvis, whose trade to San Diego has now been officially announced by both the Padres and Phillies.

    Ruiz, 23, made the considerable jump from Class-A Advanced to the Majors this season, though he only threw a single inning at the big league level. The Venezuelan-born Ruiz worked as a catcher for the bulk of his pro career with the Padres but began transitioning to the mound in 2016. He tossed a career-high 49 2/3 innings in 2017 with the team’s Class-A Advanced affiliate, struggling to a 5.98 ERA in that time.

    Ruiz, however, sat at 95.3 mph with his heater in his lone MLB appearance this past season and averaged 8.2 K/9 in his first full season as a pitcher in the minors. He also averaged 4.5 BB/9, though, and posted a low 32.5 percent ground-ball rate, which contributed to some trouble in keeping the ball in the park (1.27 HR/9). He’s tossed 16 innings in the Venezuelan Winter League this offseason, posting a 3.94 ERA with a 12-to-6 K/BB ratio, a hit batter and a wild pitch.

    In 1005 plate appearances throughout his minor league career, Ruiz is a .203/.239/.249 hitter, so it seems unlikely that he’ll return to the catching position anytime soon.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Acquire Freddy Galvis]]> 2017-12-15T18:11:19Z 2017-12-15T18:10:34Z 12:10pm: The two teams have announced the trade.

    11:15am: The Padres look to have found their shortstop for the 2018 season, as they’ve reportedly reached a tentative agreement to acquire switch-hitting Freddy Galvis from the Phillies in exchange for minor league right-hander Enyel De Los Santos. The teams have yet to announce the trade.

    Freddy Galvis | Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

    Galvis, who turned 28 last month, is a free agent following the 2018 season but will provide the Padres with a strong defender to serve as stopgap while ballhyhooed prospect Fernando Tatis Jr. continues developing in Triple-A El Paso. It’s been suggested in the past that Tatis could debut late in the 2018 season, so a one-year placeholder may be all the Friars truly need at the position. MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projects Galvis to earn $7.4MM in 2018 after his final trip through the arbitration process.

    In Galvis, they’ll acquire an OBP-challenged defensive specialist that has significantly increased his power output over the past two seasons. Galvis hit a combined 20 homer from his rookie season in 2012 through the end of the 2015 campaign. However, he popped 20 long balls in 2016 and 12 this past season while batting a collective .248/.292/.390 in those two seasons.

    Defensively, Galvis ranks sixth among MLB shortstops in terms of Ultimate Zone Rating over the past two seasons. Defensive Runs Saved is less enthusiastic about his work, pegging him as an average defender and ranking him 12th among big league shortstops. Regardless of one’s preferred defensive metric, it’s clear that Galvis will represent a mammoth upgrade on the defensive side of the game for a Padres club that ranks dead last in shortstop DRS (-38) and UZR (-38.4) across the past two seasons.

    For the Phillies, Galvis was on the verge of becoming expendable with top infield prospects J.P. Crawford and Scott Kingery on the cusp of MLB readiness. Dealing him to San Diego will allow the Phils to deploy Crawford at shortstop from the get-go in 2018, assuming he looks ready to be tested against MLB pitching on a full-time basis in Spring Training. He’ll line up between Maikel Franco at third base and Cesar Hernandez at second base, assuming Hernandez (another trade candidate) isn’t moved prior to Opening Day as well. That trio will be joined by breakout slugger Rhys Hoskins at first base.

    De Los Santos, who will turn 21 on Dec. 25, was the 13th-ranked prospect in a strong Padres system, per Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo of He fell shy of Baseball America’s offseason list of the Padres’ top 10 prospects, though BA’s Kyle Glaser tweets that De Los Santos would be a top 10 name in many systems throughout the league. Glaser tweets that De Los Santos sits 94-98 mph with a heater that he commands to both sides in the lower portion of the strike zone. Callis and Mayo note that he already has an average curveball and a changeup that flashes above-average at times.

    The 2017 season was a strong one for De Los Santos, who logged 150 innings over the life of 26 appearances (24 starts) and averaged 8.3 K/9 against 2.9 BB/9 with a 44.2 percent ground-ball rate en route to a 3.78 ERA. It’s not clear where the Phils intend to start him in 2018, but he’ll likely either return to Double-A and be in line for a quick bump to Triple-A early in the season or just open the year in Triple-A right out of the gate.

    Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller first reported that the two sides were in serious negotiations (Twitter link). AJ Cassavell of tweeted that the two sides were close and that a pitcher would go back to Philadelphia in the deal. USA Today’s Bob Nightengale reported that the agreement had been reached and that De Los Santos would be sent to the Phillies in return (Twitter links).

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

    Kyle Downing <![CDATA[Padres “Clear-Cut Favorites” For Eric Hosmer]]> 2017-12-14T17:36:31Z 2017-12-14T13:04:46Z Following two face-to-face meetings, the Padres seem to be the clear-cut favorites to sign free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports. Nightengale also notes that the Red Sox are still “lurking”.

    The Padres have been frequently linked to Hosmer this offseason, but multiple face-to-face meetings could mean that talks have reached a more advanced stage. Indeed, Nightengale’s use of the phrase “clear-cut” seems to imply that teams have at least made someone detailed pitches by now, and that the Padres are far ahead of their competition.

    Hosmer is coming fresh off a career year and is just 28 years of age. He hit .318/.385/.498 with 25 homers in 671 plate appearances. The durable Hosmer played in all 162 games and added a Gold Glove to his list of accomplishments for the 2017 season. Hosmer ranked third among free agents in terms of earning potential on MLBTR’s Top 50 Free Agents With Predictions piece.

    The Royals free agent rejected a qualifying offer, so if the Padres were to sign him, they’d have to give up their third-highest pick in the 2018 draft (in the case of the Padres, who have a pick in Competitive Balance Round A, that’d be a second-round selection). Since Hosmer will almost certainly sign a deal for more than $50MM, the Royals would stand to gain a compensatory draft pick after the first round.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Rumors: Hosmer, Shortstops]]> 2017-12-14T05:49:15Z 2017-12-14T05:49:15Z Surprisingly, the Padres have been among the most aggressive suitors for free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer this offseason. While the rebuilding Padres likely wouldn’t be near-term contenders even with Hosmer, they regard the longtime Royal as enough of a culture-changing player to justify their attempt to sign him, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. But Hosmer’s still seeking a contract in the $200MM range, according to Lin, who doubts San Diego likes him enough to bid that much (Twitter link).

    Elsewhere, the Padres seem to be making some headway in their efforts to add a shortstop, Lin tweets. GM A.J. Preller says the club has at least narrowed the list of possibilities to a handful or so. They’ve been connected to the likes of Freddy Galvis, Zack Cozart and Alcides Escobar (Hosmer’s teammate in Kansas City) recently.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Trade Chatter: Nats, Rays, Fulmer, Reds, Jays, Braves, Giants, Yelich, Phils]]> 2017-12-14T03:45:12Z 2017-12-14T03:44:39Z Looking to improve an already enviable rotation, the Nationals have Rays right-handers Chris Archer and Jake Odorizzi on their radar, Jon Heyman of FanRag reports (via Twitter). Either would cost far less in terms of salary than free agent Jake Arrieta will, and Heyman notes that the Nats are unsure if they’d be able to afford Arrieta. Heyman also points to Diamondbacks righty Zack Greinke as a possibility for the Nats; however, he’s not exactly cheap, with $138.5MM coming his way through 2021.

    More on the trade front:

    • The Tigers “will only entertain lopsided offers” for righty Michael Fulmer, Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press (Twitter link). A trade involving the highly coveted 24-year-old doesn’t look likely, then.
    • The Blue Jays are interested in Reds outfielders Billy Hamilton and Adam Duvall, per reports from Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet (via Twitter) and Jays Journal. The Braves also have interest in the 29-year-old Duvall, tweets Heyman. Duvall, a 30-home run hitter in each of the previous two seasons, is controllable for the next four years. He won’t be arbitration eligible until next winter.
    • The Giants’ own interest in Hamilton continues, but Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic tweets that the chatter with the Reds has “faded significantly” of late. Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer adds on Twitter that the Giants are the most serious suitors for Hamilton, but they’re “at a bit of a standoff” with the Reds. San Francisco still has interest in free agent Jay Bruce, per Rosenthal, and Bob Nightengale of USA Today tweets that Bruce is the top name on San Francisco’s “wish list.” Still, the club has not made him an offer to this point.
    • It’s up in the air whether the Marlins will trade center fielder Christian Yelich. Either way, the Phillies will continue to monitor his availability, Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia relays. Meanwhile, they’ve “been aggressive” in shopping shortstop Freddy Galvis, according to Salisbury, who adds (via Twitter) that the Angels “really liked” second baseman Cesar Hernandez before they acquired Ian Kinsler. The Halos didn’t want to meet the Phillies’ asking price for Hernandez, however.
    • The Red Sox asked about Marcell Ozuna before the Cardinals acquired him, but they did not have the sort of pitching assets the Marlins were for, Dombrowski told reporters including the Globe’s Peter Abraham (Twitter link.) The Indians also inquired about Ozuna, Paul Hoynes of writes.
    • In addition to Chase Headley, the Padres are dangling infielder Yangervis Solarte in chatter with rival organizations, Heyman reports on Twitter. Solarte, 30, is controllable for the next three years at affordable costs (a guaranteed $4MM in 2018 and then club options totaling $13.5MM for 2019-20).
    • The Blue Jays were another team with interest in Kinsler before Wednesday’s trade, Nicholson-Smith tweets. Toronto was on Kinsler’s 10-team no-trade list, so it’s unclear how open he’d have been to going there.
    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Angels Close To Acquiring Third Baseman, Interested In Chase Headley]]> 2017-12-14T02:50:57Z 2017-12-14T02:50:57Z 8:50pm: San Diego’s “working very hard” to trade Headley, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney, though he doesn’t specify whether the Angels are involved (Twitter link).

    7:56pm: The Angels are close to acquiring a third baseman, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports (Twitter link). They have “strong interest” in new Padres third baseman Chase Headley, Nightengale adds.

    Headley was already part of one trade this week, going from the Yankees to the Padres on Tuesday in what amounted to a salary dump for New York. For now, the Padres are on the hook for $12.5MM of Headley’s $13MM in 2018, the last year of his contract. Given that the Angels are positioning themselves to contend in 2018 and the Padres are still amid a rebuild, the 33-year-old Headley would make more sense on Anaheim’s roster.

    Headley has an important fan in Angels general manager Billy Eppler, Joel Sherman of the New York Post notes (Twitter link). Eppler was in the Yankees’ front office when they acquired Headley from his current team, San Diego, in 2014.

    Along with Headley, the Angels have shown interest in free agent third basemen Mike Moustakas and Todd Frazier, who was teammates with Headley in New York last season, this week.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Padres Notes: Preller, Headley, Cozart, Galvis]]> 2017-12-12T22:34:43Z 2017-12-12T22:34:43Z Padres GM A.J. Preller discussed his team’s surprising acquisition of Chase Headley with reporters (including’s AJ Cassavell), and the possibility exists that Headley will be flipped before Opening Day.  “I talked to Chase this morning and explained to him that we’re going to look at the situation and figure out if there’s space for everybody, was very honest, telling him we’re going to talk to other clubs as well,” Preller said.  Headley’s addition has also created a glut within San Diego’s infield, and Preller said that he has already received calls from teams about Yangervis Solarte, Cory Spangenberg, and Carlos Asuaje.

    • The Padres’ rather surprising pursuit of Hosmer has drawn headlines, though Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller tweets that San Diego is more focused on either signing Zack Cozart or acquiring Freddy Galvis from the Phillies during the Winter Meetings.  Either infielder would address a more pressing need at shortstop.  Preller said (hat tip to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune) that the Padres have a list of eight or nine shortstop options that they feel could be acquired.  Lin also hears from some rival officials that the Padres would possibly be open to dealing a young pitcher in exchange for a shortstop.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Position Player Rumblings: Padres, Moose, Walker, Napoli, Cards, D-Backs]]> 2017-12-12T21:40:03Z 2017-12-12T18:49:37Z The Padres could play a major role in the market over the next few days, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports writes on Twitter. Indeed, the organization has already made one interesting move today. San Diego is looking around for a controllable shortstop and could conceivably match up with the Cubs, Passan suggests. (From an outside perspective, it seems ace reliever Brad Hand would be the most likely Padres piece to pique Chicago’s interest, but that’s just speculation.) Also, the team’s interest in free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer is seemingly increasingly serious. Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets that the Friars are “strongly in [the] mix” for Hosmer, while Passan says the sides have gained “traction” in discussions.

    Here’s more from the position-player side of the market:

    • At this point, at least, the Braves are not engaged on the market for third baseman Mike Moustakas, according to Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio (via Twitter). Atlanta does have interest in improving at the hot corner, but it seems that new GM Alex Anthopoulos is not all that intrigued by the powerful but OBP-challenged Moustakas. Of course, there’s still time for the market to develop.
    • Free agent second baseman Neil Walker is still looking for a four-year deal, according to Heyman (via Twitter). That seems like a lofty ask, though, for a 32-year-old player on a market full of possibilities at second. Walker has been a steady producer, to be sure, and finished with a strong .267/.409/.433 run with the Brewers, but with so many other options out there it seems more likely he’ll end up settling for a two or three-year guarantee.
    • The Mets have some interest in free agent Mike Napoli, per the New York Post’s Joel Sherman. Indeed, the club’s new skipper, Mickey Callaway, has reached out to Napoli to discuss the possibility. (The two share a connection from the Indians.) Presumably, Napoli would share time with Dominic Smith at first base, with the organization arranging a natural platoon pairing and then allowing things to play out based upon performance.
    • As the Cardinals continue to seek ways to upgrade after missing on Giancarlo Stanton, they have been scanning the market for alternatives. The team’s preference, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes, is to “turn two of their excess outfielders into one newcomer.” That would seemingly represent a fairly clean way to improve the roster, though of course it will likely also require a rather particular trade partner. It is not difficult to imagine such a team also wishing to receive a sweetener in exchange for giving up a premium asset for volume. There are plenty more details and quotes from the Cards front office in the post.
    • The Diamondbacks have been contacted by other organizations about the availability of their middle infielders, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (via Twitter). Arizona certainly has quite some volume of MLB-level options up the middle, though it’s also not entirely clear at this point just which players (if any) have firmly secured places in the club’s long-term plans. It’s possible that market demand could help dictate the decisonmaking process, too, as the organization seeks ways to navigate a tricky payroll situation. Though none of the team’s top middle infielders are very costly, that very feature might allow the D-Backs to bring back equally affordable pieces that meet needs or perhaps structure a package deal to shed other salary. Chris Owings ($3.8MM arb projection) has only two years of control left, while Nick Ahmed ($1.1MM) has three and Daniel Descalso will hit the open market after earning $2MM in 2018. Ketel Marte and Brandon Drury are still shy of arbitration.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rays Acquire Ryan Schimpf]]> 2017-12-12T18:43:02Z 2017-12-12T18:29:56Z The Rays have acquired infielder Ryan Schimpf from the Padres, per a club announcement. Minor-league infielder Deion Tansel is headed to San Diego in return.

    Most immediately, the move opens a roster spot for the Padres to complete their just-announced deal with the Yankees. But San Diego is also somewhat overloaded with options at second and third, leaving the team without space to carry Schimpf on its 40-man roster.

    It’s an interesting swap for the Rays, who have yet to make their intentions fully clear. The left-handed-hitting Schimpf could enter some kind of timeshare in the infield, replace the more expensive Brad Miller if he’s traded, or fill in if the club pursues larger trades.

    Schimpf, 29, has just 527 MLB plate appearances in his career, but he has launched 34 home runs in that span. Of course, he has also racked up 175 strikeouts and overseen a .195 batting average, though that’s partially offset by a healthy 13.1% walk rate.

    Meanwhile, the 23-year-old Tansel has yet to advance past the low-A level since being taken in the 32nd round of the 2016 draft. Last year, playing in the New York-Pennsylvania League, he slashed .277/.336/.403 over 211 plate appearances.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Acquire Chase Headley, Bryan Mitchell]]> 2017-12-12T19:49:38Z 2017-12-12T18:26:39Z 12:26pm: The deal is official. Indications were that the Pads were taking the full salary of Headley, but the Yankees announced that some amount of cash will be included in the deal as well.’s Mark Feinsand tweets that $500K will go to San Diego, though Jon Heyman of Fan Rag notes on Twitter that the cash will represent payment of half of Headley’s $1MM assignment bonus, which the clubs agreed to split.

    10:13am: The Padres have reached agreement with the Yankees on a swap that will bring third baseman Chase Headley back to San Diego along with righty Bryan Mitchell, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post (via Twitter). Jabari Blash is going to the Yanks in the deal, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (via Twitter). It’s far from clear that Blash will have any chance of holding a 40-man spot with New York, so this seems to make clear the move is intended almost entirely to shed Headley’s salary and free up some roster space.

    Sep 14, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Chase Headley (12) watches his RBI single against the Baltimore Orioles during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

    There are several interesting dimensions to this deal at first glance. Headley’s shocking return to San Diego is surely among them; he went through a lengthy trade saga with the Friars before being sent to the Yanks. Ultimately, the veteran third baseman re-upped with the Yankees on a contract that has one year and $13MM remaining on it.

    In taking on that money, the Padres get a solid veteran player but also add an interesting and controllable arm in Mitchell. The 26-year-old has mostly worked in a relief role during sporadic MLB action over the past four years, pitching to a middling 4.94 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9. But he has also shown greater promise at times in the minors. In 2017, Mitchell posted a 3.25 ERA with 9.3 K/9 and 1.8 BB/9 over 63 2/3 frames at Triple-A.

    Things really get interesting when one considers the potential fallout. On the San Diego side, plugging Headley in at third would likely mean that Yangervis Solarte will end up on the move, though perhaps there are still some arrangements where both could coexist. Headley himself could end up moving on to another team; he ought to hold some appeal after a late-season hot streak boosted his overall 2017 batting output to a .273/.352/.406 slash that lands in range of league average. While he’s probably not worth his full contract value, the Padres ought to be able to find a taker for a not-insignificant portion.

    For the Yankees, this swap — combined with the decision to include Starlin Castro in the Giancarlo Stanton deal — leaves the team without clear options at both second and third base. With added payroll flexibility, though, there are any number of possibilities that could be pursued, including a potential reunion with Todd Frazier, who was acquired to upgrade over Headley at the 2017 trade deadline. The Yanks have a variety of intriguing young players, too, led by top prospect Gleyber Torres, so that remains an option at either spot. And, of course, the Yankees are said to be perusing the trade market for starters, with free agency also now seemingly a possibility as well.

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Rangers, Padres, Rockies Join Indians, Others In Pursuit Of Carlos Santana]]> 2017-12-12T13:43:16Z 2017-12-12T13:42:36Z TUESDAY, 7:42am: Santana and his representatives are weighing offers from several teams, Hoynes reports, though it isn’t certain if he is close to accepting a deal.

    MONDAY, 5:04pm: The Padres have indeed discussed Santana, but “it seems they’re still focused on” Hosmer, according to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune (Twitter link).

    1:51pm: The Rockies are also showing some interest in Santana, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post tweets. Colorado has a clear opening at first base, though the team has indicated its top priorities lie elsewhere.

    10:27am: Cleveland’s top extension offer to Santana was three years and $36MM, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets, and the organization would “likely go higher” now that he’s on the open market.

    SUNDAY, 9:00pm: The Indians made Santana a contract offer, the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Paul Hoynes reports.  While the offer wasn’t taken, the Tribe have been informed that they will get a chance to counter any offer Santana receives from another team that he considered acceptable.

    6:32pm: Carlos Santana is already drawing quite a bit of interest this offseason, and Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer adds the Rangers and Padres to the list of other teams (including the Phillies, Red Sox, and Mariners) already linked to Santana on the rumor mill.

    Texas is known to be focusing on adding pitching this winter, though the team’s offense also lacked some of the well-rounded attack of past years.  Santana would clearly be a big upgrade in the first base/DH hole left behind by free agent Mike Napoli, who struggled last year in a sub-replacement level season.  Santana’s arrival would bolster the Rangers’ lineup against the possible departure of Adrian Beltre after the 2018 season.

    Installing Santana at first base would have a ripple effect throughout the Rangers’ lineup.  Joey Gallo would have to return to left field, with Nomar Mazara shifting to right and Shin-Soo Choo being limited to DH duties.  Top prospect Willie Calhoun had been mentioned as a possible candidate for regular DH or corner outfield duty, though Texas might want to give him a bit more seasoning rather than expect Calhoun to immediately contribute to a team that hopes to contend.

    Previous reports seemed to downplay San Diego’s possible interest in Santana, though it could be that the Padres have since considered Santana for what seems to be an increasing desire to sign a first baseman.  The Padres have also had interest in Eric Hosmer, with the logic being that the 28-year-old Hosmer is young enough to still be productive in a few years when San Diego is theoretically finished with its rebuild.  Santana, by contrast, turns 32 in April, and while the slugger hasn’t shown many signs of slowing down, he wouldn’t have the luxury of the occasional DH rest day while playing for a National League team.

    Adding a first baseman would necessitate shifting Wil Myers into a corner outfield role, though the Padres may see that as an acceptable tradeoff for adding offense.  The Padres finished at or near the bottom of most major offensive categories last year, so a proven above-average hitter like Santana (who hit .259/.363/.455 with 23 homers over 667 PA last year and has posted a 123 wRC+ over his career) would add some much-needed pop to the lineup.

    Santana rejected the Indians’ qualifying offer, and thus the Rangers and Padres would each need to surrender some compensation to sign the first baseman.  Texas would give up their second-highest draft pick and $500K of international signing bonus money, while San Diego would only have to surrender its third-highest draft pick.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Remain Interested In Re-Signing Jhoulys Chacin]]> 2017-12-12T02:41:58Z 2017-12-12T02:35:29Z
  • The Padres “remain in constant communication” with free agent righty Jhoulys Chacin’s camp, GM A.J. Preller revealed (Twitter link via AJ Cassavell of A deal is not imminent, though, Cassavell adds. Chacin turned in a quality year with the Padres last season and should earn a nice contract as a result.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Interested In Zack Cozart, Cesar Hernandez]]> 2017-12-11T18:40:15Z 2017-12-11T18:24:40Z The Padres are one of the only teams in baseball with a clear need at shortstop, and they appear to be shopping around the potential market. Per Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer, via Twitter, San Diego has “real interest” in free agent Zack Cozart. He’ll surely command a fairly significant contract, though there may also be an opportunity to realize value given the lack of demand at short. The Friars are also looking into Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets. Galvis is projected to earn a healthy $7.4MM in his final season of arbitration eligibility, so he’d likely be available for a reasonable price — so long as the Phils decide it’s time to move on.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Will Reportedly Pursue Zack Cozart]]> 2017-12-10T16:35:24Z 2017-12-10T16:35:24Z
  • The shortstop-needy Padres will pursue the premier player available at the position, Zack Cozart, according to Cafardo. Cozart was one of the best players in the majors last season, pairing his usual excellent defense with uncharacteristically great offense (.297/.385/.548 with 24 homers in 507 PAs), but the longtime Red isn’t a free agent at a time when many teams are seeking a shortstop, as MLBTR’s Mark Polishuk recently explained. That could negatively affect his market, then, though MLBTR still forecasts a respectable contract (three years, $42MM) for the 32-year-old.

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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Reportedly Met With Eric Hosmer Yesterday]]> 2017-12-08T17:00:14Z 2017-12-08T16:55:38Z The Padres have been linked to Eric Hosmer on multiple occasions this offseason, and Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports (via Twitter) that the team met with Hosmer yesterday as the team continues an “aggressive” pursuit of the free agent first baseman.

    It’s an odd fit at first glance, as the rebuilding Padres have Wil Myers at first base after moving him there from the outfield and signing him to an $83MM extension. However, Myers could be shifted back to an outfield corner (he reportedly has no qualms about doing so) in the event that the Friars ultimately strike a deal with Hosmer and agent Scott Boras.

    That said, it’s still somewhat surprising to see the Padres pursuing a free agent of this magnitude when they’re not yet expected to contend in 2018. Hosmer is a relatively youthful free agent, having just turned 28 in October, but he’s still expected to command a nine-figure contract, which would not only represent a franchise record for the Padres but would also cost the rebuilding club its third-best pick in next year’s draft due to the fact that Hosmer rejected a $17.2MM qualifying offer from the Royals.

    Hosmer is coming off a career year, having slashed .318/.385/.498 with 25 homers — including a ridiculous .336/.402/.532 slash in his final 592 plate appearances after a slow start to the year. Hosmer has had productive offensive stretches in the past, but the former No. 3 overall pick and vaunted top prospect has also yet to string together successive seasons at that level of play.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Rumors: Hosmer, Shortstops]]> 2017-12-08T04:38:33Z 2017-12-08T01:00:50Z
  • There’s more indication that the Padres are fairly serious about going after Eric Hosmer, says Heyman. He also reported yesterday that first baseman Wil Myers would be amenable to moving to the outfield to make way for Hosmer to play at first. Of course, whether the Pads are really willing to hand out a big enough contract to get a deal done remains to be seen.

    • There’s more indication that the Padres are fairly serious about going after Eric Hosmer, says Heyman. He also reported yesterday that first baseman Wil Myers would be amenable to moving to the outfield to make way for Hosmer to play at first. Of course, whether the Pads are really willing to hand out a big enough contract to get a deal done remains to be seen.
    • At shortstop, the Padres have taken a look at Phillies veteran Freddy Galvis, says Heyman. The team is also weighing free agent Alcides Escobar. Either would seemingly make sense as a stop-gap option for the rebuilding club.
    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Shohei Ohtani Plans To Meet With Seven Teams]]> 2017-12-04T13:34:05Z 2017-12-04T13:34:05Z Shohei Ohtani has already narrowed his list of potential landing spots to seven team, according to multiple reporters (with Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM the first to tweet the final seven). Only the Dodgers, Giants, Angels, Padres, Mariners, Rangers and Cubs will receive meetings with Ohtani. While Ohtani has three weeks to negotiate with teams, ESPN’s Buster Olney tweets that Ohtani could make a decision well before that point, noting that he could be introduced by his new club at next week’s Winter Meetings.

    Of the remaining teams in the fold, the Rangers still have the most money to offer Ohtani, at $3.535MM, though his signing bonus seems increasingly to be a secondary consideration in where he ultimately signs, especially after last week’s reports that Ohtani could top $20MM in annual earnings in marketing endorsements. Certainly, his list of finalists reflects a preference for West Coast teams and a proximity to Japan, though the presence of the Rangers and Cubs indicates that he’s not quite locked into that mindset just yet.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Details On Robbie Erlin's Contract]]> 2017-12-04T06:13:15Z 2017-12-04T06:13:15Z
  • Robbie Erlin’s contract with the Padres will pay him $650K in 2018,’s AJ Cassavell reports (Twitter link).  The left-hander was eligible for arbitration for the first time this winter, though he and the Padres avoided the process by agreeing to that one-year deal, which fell just shy of MLBTR’s projected $700K salary for Erlin.  After undergoing Tommy John surgery in May 2016, Erlin missed all of the 2017 season recovering from the procedure.
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    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Mariners, Giants, Padres, Rangers, Cubs, Angels Among Teams To Meet With Shohei Ohtani]]> 2017-12-04T05:40:13Z 2017-12-04T05:40:33Z 11:40pm: The Angels are indeed one of the finalists, as per The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (via Twitter).

    10:39pm: The Angels are thought by “multiple sources” to be one of the finalists, Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan tweets.  The Tigers are out of the running, according to Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press.

    8:59pm: The Rangers and Cubs will both meet with Ohtani, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports (Twitter link), and they’re also the only two non-West Coast teams who appear to still be alive in the candidate process.  The Rangers, Grant notes, have yet to comment on their status one way or the other.

    7:22pm: The Nationals won’t be receiving a meeting, the Washington Post’s Chelsea Janes reports (Twitter link).

    6:58pm: The Braves are out,’s Jerry Crasnick reports (via Twitter).

    6:50pm: The Padres will receive a meeting with Ohtani, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reports (Twitter links).  The Dodgers are also thought to still be active in the Ohtani sweepstakes though Heyman doesn’t have confirmation; regardless, the Dodgers aren’t thought to be favorites to land Ohtani.

    6:38pm: The Rays, Cardinals and White Sox are out, according to the Tampa Bay Times’ Marc Topkin, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and USA Today’s Bob Nightengale (all Twitter links).

    6:15pm: The Diamondbacks won’t receive a meeting, Ken Rosenthal tweets.

    6:12pm: The Blue Jays, Pirates, and Brewers are all out, as respectively reported by’s Shi Davidi,’s Adam Berry, and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Tom Haudricourt (all Twitter links).

    5:48pm: The Mets are also out, as per Joel Sherman of the New York Post (Twitter link).

    5:38pm: Ohtani’s list is “heavy” on West Coast teams, Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports, though the Cubs may still be involved.  Not every west-based team is included, however, as The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal tweets that the A’s aren’t involved.

    5:28pm: The Red Sox are also out of the running, president of baseball ops Dave Dombrowski told Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe.  The Twins also won’t be getting a meeting with Ohtani, Heyman tweets.

    5:16pm: The Giants and Mariners are among the teams that will receive meetings with Shohei Ohtani and his representatives next week, Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan reports (Twitter link).  It isn’t known who the other finalists are in the Ohtani sweepstakes, though the Yankees are one of the teams that didn’t make the cut, as Yankees GM Brian Cashman told reporters (including’s Brendan Kuty and’s Bryan Hoch).

    According to Cashman, Ohtani seems to be leaning towards West Coast teams in smaller markets.  This ties to a report from FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman saying that Ohtani’s reps are informing teams that the two-way star would prefer to play in a smaller market.

    The news adds another fascinating layer to the Ohtani sweepstakes, which was already one of the more intriguing free agent pursuits in recent memory.  Given the seeming lack of immediate financial motive that inspired Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball, it opened the door for every team in baseball (regardless of market or payroll size) to make a push for the 23-year-old.  There had been speculation that Ohtani might look to avoid playing in a larger market, so this apparent confirmation creates a realistic possibility that he will land with a team that wouldn’t normally be considered a favorite to land such a coveted free agent.

    Of course, San Francisco isn’t exactly a small market, though Ohtani wouldn’t necessarily be the center of attention on a club with such established stars as Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner (and maybe even Giancarlo Stanton in the near future).  Playing for an NL team, however, would force Ohtani into a pinch-hitting or even a part-time outfield role for the at-bats he seeks in his attempt to be a two-way player in the big leagues.  The Mariners do have such a DH spot available (in a timeshare with Nelson Cruz), and were considered to be a contender for Ohtani given their long history of Japanese players.

    The Yankees also have had several significant Japanese players on their past and current rosters, and were widely seen as one of the major favorites for Ohtani’s services from a financial (in terms of available international bonus money) and positional (openings at DH and in the rotation) standpoint, not to mention their international fame and their young core of talent ready to make a World Series push.  With Ohtani now out of the picture, the Yankees could move to signing more pitching depth — a reunion with C.C. Sabathia has been widely speculated as a possibility — or a veteran bat to serve as designated hitter, if the club doesn’t just rotate its DH days to find plate appearances for everyone on the current roster.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Padres Interested In Freddy Galvis]]> 2017-12-04T05:17:50Z 2017-12-04T05:17:50Z
  • Two Phillies middle infielders are drawing trade buzz, as the Padres have interest in shortstop Freddy Galvis, while the Angels continue to have interest in second baseman Cesar Hernandez, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports (subscription required).  The Halos have long been connected to Hernandez for their second base vacancy, with interest dating back to last offseason.  San Diego have also long been looking for an answer at shortstop, though the Friars are reportedly now just in the market for a short-term fix until top Fernando Tatis Jr.  is ready.  Galvis is such a fit, as he will hit free agency next winter.  While the Phils have J.P. Crawford and Scott Kingery ready to move into regular action in the middle infield, however, Rosenthal notes that the team is content having depth at second and short, and isn’t in any rush to move Galvis or Hernandez unless the right trade can be found.
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    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Extend A.J. Preller]]> 2017-12-03T15:19:51Z 2017-12-03T14:20:18Z The Padres have signed general manager A.J. Preller to a three-year contract extension, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. Preller’s new deal will keep him with the team through 2022.

    MLB: General Managers Meetings

    The Padres and Preller struck the agreement back in October, per Lin, who notes that the GM had been under control through 2019 until then. The team turned its full attention to securing Preller for the long haul after re-upping manager Andy Green through 2021 back in August.

    The 2018 campaign will be the fourth full season in San Diego for Preller, whom the club hired in August 2014. Previously the Rangers’ assistant GM, Preller has created plenty of headlines since joining the Padres. The club was amid its ninth straight non-playoff season when it landed Preller, who tried to orchestrate a quick turnaround by trading for the likes of Matt Kemp, Justin Upton, Craig Kimbrel, Melvin Upton Jr., Wil Myers and Derek Norris during his first offseason on the job. The majority of those acquisitions didn’t pan out as hoped, though, evidenced by the fact that San Diego hasn’t returned to the playoffs in the Preller era and Myers is the only member of that six-player group who’s still with the organization.

    After Preller’s plan to immediately compete went belly-up, he reversed course and began a full-scale rebuild whose first significant move came by way of a November 2015 trade with the Red Sox. Preller sent Kimbrel to Boston in that deal, which netted the Padres a potential long-term building block in center fielder Manuel Margot. The 23-year-old Margot and the 28-year-old Myers (whom the Padres signed to a six-year extension last winter) rank as the most notable current Padres position players acquired under Preller, whose tenure has also included the astute addition of now-standout reliever Brad Hand via waivers in 2016.

    Hand, 27, may soon turn into an extremely useful trade chip for a Padres team that’s not in position to push for a playoff spot yet, thus further beefing up a farm system that, thanks in part to Preller, has become one of the game’s best. That system includes Preller-acquired prospects in infielder Fernando Tatis Jr. (stolen from the White Sox for the fading James Shields in 2016); left-handers MacKenzie Gore, Adrian Morejon, Logan Allen and Joey Lucchesi; right-handers Michel Baez, Cal Quantrill and Anderson Espinoza; and shortstop Gabriel Arias. All nine of those farmhands rank among the Padres’ 10 best prospects, per Baseball America.

    While Preller has impressed Padres brass during his time with the club, his reign has come with obvious black marks. The club lost catcher Yasmani Grandal in the Kemp deal, for one, and followed that by parting with young shortstop Trea Turner in the Myers trade. Both Grandal and Turner have since turned into more valuable big leaguers than the vets the Padres acquired for them.

    Every GM has hit-and-miss trades, of course, but most executives don’t end up serving suspensions during their tenures. That hasn’t been the case for Preller, whom MLB issued a 30-day ban back in September 2016 for failing to disclose required medical information in the trade that sent lefty Drew Pomeranz to the Red Sox for Espinoza. In addition, a couple months prior to his suspension, the Preller-led Friars agreed to undo a portion of a swap with the Marlins, taking back injured righty Colin Rea after Miami learned about undisclosed medical information.

    While the Padres’ front office was reportedly split on retaining Preller in the wake of his suspension, his extension makes it obvious that he has the support of team brass. Executive chairman Ron Fowler and managing partner Peter Seidler believe Preller and Green are the tandem that will eventually bring an end to the Padres’ playoff drought, perhaps by 2020, according to Lin.

    “A.J.’s really earned this extension,” Seidler told Lin. “He’s built a great organization around him, and that’s seen from scouting all the way through Andy Green and the major league staff. Personally, I couldn’t be happier. We’ve got a ways to go, but I think it’s with confidence we extend him and with confidence we think we’re on the right path.”

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Padres Hire Infield Coach]]> 2017-12-03T05:38:42Z 2017-12-03T05:38:42Z
  • The Padres are hiring Josh Johnson as their infield coach, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune tweets. The 31-year-old Johnson, who managed the GCL Nationals from 2016-17, isn’t to be confused with the former major league pitcher of the same name. In his new role, Johnson will take over for Ramon Vazquez, whom the Padres parted with after the season. With Johnson’s hiring, San Diego now has its full coaching staff for 2018.
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    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Shohei Ohtani Rumors: Saturday]]> 2017-12-03T02:00:28Z 2017-12-03T00:54:57Z The latest on game-changing Japanese ace/slugger Shohei Ohtani, whom the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters posted on Friday and who’s at the beginning of a three-week window to work out an agreement with a major league team:

    • The Ohtani sweepstakes is seemingly on the verge of picking up in earnest, as Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the 23-year-old CAA Sports client will meet with various teams in Los Angeles next week (Twitter link). The Mariners are among those clubs, suggests Passan, who relays that team brass has asked multiple members of its roster to clear their schedules for a potential meeting with Ohtani. That comes on the heels of general manager Jerry Dipoto’s revelation last week that the Mariners are preparing an aggressive push press for Ohtani. “We’re not joking around. We’re bringing the big guns,” declared Dipoto (Twitter link via Greg Johns of
    • Ohtani’s camp will notify certain teams this weekend if they’ll remain in the mix to sign him, according to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune. The Padres are hopeful they’ll advance to the next round. “As a group, we’re prepared, and I think he’s a player that obviously we’ve scouted and have history with,” GM A.J. Preller told Lin. “You try to see what the fits are and why he’s a good fit for us and why we’re a good fit for him. We’re kind of down the path of doing that work.”
    • The Red Sox will also chase Ohtani, per president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski, who told Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald via text: “Would acknowledge our interest. Beyond that, all would be confidential.” Ohtani joining Chris Sale and David Price would make for a rather enticing top of the rotation, needless to say, and he could also factor in as a designated hitter for a Boston club that received uninspiring production there last season in the first year of the post-David Ortiz era.
    • Count the World Series-winning Astros as yet another team that will court Ohtani. Owner Jim Crane told Brian McTaggart of that the Astros will “put a full-court press on” to sign Ohtani, adding that they’ll “probably send the A-team out there.” He also noted that the Astros “need a left-handed DH, so there you have it.” In addition to having the ability to demonstrate his offensive prowess in Houston, Ohtani would add another potential front-end starter to a rotation that already includes past Cy Young winners Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel.
    • While the Rays are obvious long shots to land Ohtani, they have an advantage over other teams with the presence of two-way prospect Brendan McKay, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times observes. McKay, the fourth overall pick in last year’s draft, could be both a pitcher and a hitter in the majors. “We’re hopeful (McKay) can do it,” Rays GM Erik Neander said. “We want to give him the opportunity to do it because he’s shown he deserves that opportunity and we don’t want to take that away from him prematurely.” Citing McKay’s presence, the Rays will emphasize to Ohtani that they’re open-minded about developing and employing a two-way player, per Topkin, who also expects them to pitch Tampa Bay’s “relaxed” lifestyle during the recruiting process.
    • The Marlins, MLB’s other Florida-based organization, are unlikely to make an effort for Ohtani, Tim Healey of the South Florida Sun Sentinel writes. The cost-cutting Marlins are wary of the financial commitment it would take to reel in Ohtani, who won’t require much from a salary standpoint but will cost a $20MM posting fee. While that looks like a relatively minor amount for a possible franchise face like Ohtani, the Marlins simply aren’t in position to fork it over in their current financial state, Healey explains.
    • While the Indians only have $10K in international bonus pool space, they’re expected to partake in the Ohtani derby, per Paul Hoynes of He’d slot into an already loaded rotation, one which features two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco; additionally, Ohtani could DH for a team at risk of losing Carlos Santana in free agency.
    • All things considered, the Yankees may be the favorites for Ohtani. There’s a general “fear” coming from other franchises regarding the Bronx Bombers, tweets Passan, given the talent on hand, the market they’re in and their strong relationship with CAA Sports. They also have the second-biggest international bonus pool.
    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Players Avoiding Arbitration: 12/1/17]]> 2017-12-05T00:35:30Z 2017-12-02T01:05:54Z With the deadline to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players set for 8pm tonight, there should be several agreements over the next few hours — particularly among players that were considered to be potential non-tender candidates. Many non-tender candidates will be presented with offers that are lower than what they’d project to earn via arbitration in a “take it or leave it” manner; some will agree to the lesser deal (as Brewers catcher Stephen Vogt did earlier this morning) while others will reject and likely hit the open market.

    Here’s today’s slate of players that have avoided the arb process and locked in at least a partial guarantee for the upcoming season (arbitration contracts are not fully guaranteed, but each of these players will be guaranteed one sixth of the agreed-upon sum unless specifically negotiated otherwise). All projections are via MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz

    • The Padres announced that lefty Robbie Erlin has agreed to a contract for 2018. The 27-year-old missed all of 2017 due to Tommy John surgery and was projected to earn $700K through arbitration. Terms of his deal have not yet been reported.
    • The Braves appear to have agreed to terms with just-claimed righty Chase Whitley, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (via Twitter). Whitley, who was projected to earn $1.0MM in his first season of arb eligibility, is said to be in line for an opportunity to work as a starter. It’s a split deal that would pay Whitley $800K in the majors, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets.
    • The Mariners agreed with Andrew Romine on a $1.05MM contract, per Jon Heyman of Fan Rag (via Twitter). Romine, a versatile infielder, was claimed off waivers after the end of the 2017 season.
    • Outfielder Abraham Almonte has reached a deal to avoid arbitration with the Indians, per a club announcement. He had featured as a possible non-tender candidate but instead found common ground with the organization. Almonte, 28, slashed just .233/.314/.366 in his 195 trips to the plate in 2017. He had projected to earn a $1.1MM payday in his first season of arbitration eligibility but will take home $825K, per Jon Heyman of Fan Rag (via Twitter).
    • The Royals have agreed to terms with righty Mike Morin to avoid arbitration, the club announced. He’ll receive a split contract,’s Jeffrey Flanagan tweets, with a $750K annual earning rate in the majors and $250K in the minors. Morin, who projected at $700K, drew a mention on MLBTR’s non-tender candidates list. Indeed, his contract reflects the middling season that he turned in. Morin allowed 16 earned runs in twenty MLB frames, though he was more effective at Triple-A.
    • Yimi Garcia and the Dodgers have avoided arbitration, per J.P. Hoornstra of the Southern California News Group (via Twitter). Garia projected to command only a $700K salary after missing all of 2017 following Tommy John surgery; he’ll end up taking home $630K, per Jon Heyman of Fan Rag (via Twitter). Now 27, Garcia had established himself as a significant member of the Dodgers’ bullpen in 2015, when he compiled a 3.34 ERA with 10.8 K/9 and 1.6 BB/9 over 56 2/3 innings. But injuries limited him in the ensuing season and ultimately culminated in a UCL replacement.
    • Per a club announcement, the Indians have agreed to a contract with righty Dan Otero. Otero will take home $1.3MM, per’s Jordan Bastian (via Twitter). He was projected to command $1.4MM. The 32-year-old Otero has been an unmitigated bargain for Cleveland over the past two years, turning in 130 2/3 total innings of 2.14 ERA pitching despite averaging just 6.5 K/9 in that span. Otero has succeeded with unfailing command (just 19 walks since joining the Indians) and a hefty groundball rate (over 60% in each of the past two seasons).
    • The Angels and righty Blake Wood agreed to a one-year, $1.45MM deal that falls well shy of his $2.2MM projection, as FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman was the first to report (via Twitter). Wood struggled mightily in Cincinnati before being picked up by the Halos late in the year and turning his season around a bit. In 17 innings with the Angels, he posted a 4.76 ERA with a much more promising 22-to-4 K/BB ratio. Heyman notes that he can earn up to $50K worth of incentives as well.
    • The White Sox announced that they’ve signed right-hander Danny Farquhar to a one-year deal worth $1.05MM — a pact that falls shy of his $1.5MM projection. In 49 1/3 innings between the Rays and ChiSox, the 30-year-old logged a 4.20 ERA with 8.2 K/9, 5.1 BB/9 and a 41.7 percent ground-ball rate.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Outright Kyle Lloyd]]> 2017-11-29T03:39:36Z 2017-11-29T03:30:50Z
  • Righty Kyle Lloyd cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A by the Padres,’s AJ Cassavell reports on Twitter. He’ll remain on hand as a depth option after cracking the majors briefly last year. In 147 1/3 frames in the upper minors in 2017, Lloyd carried a 5.01 ERA with 8.9 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9. Lloyd joined the San Diego organization after being selected in the 29th round of the 2013 draft.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Sign Jonathan Aro To Minor League Contract]]> 2017-11-27T21:42:34Z 2017-11-27T21:42:34Z
  • The Padres have signed right-hander Jonathan Aro to a minor league contract, per Aro’s agent, Gene Mato (Twitter link). The 27-year-old Aro, who was traded from the Red Sox to the Mariners as part of the Wade Miley/Carson Smith deal, has recorded excellent numbers at the Triple-A level but has yet to receive an extended look in the Majors. That Aro received a 50-game suspension earlier this season for a violation of MLB’s joint drug agreement didn’t help his case in that regard. Still, Aro owns a lifetime 2.96 ERA with 8.7 K/9 against 2.1 BB/9 in 130 2/3 innings at the Triple-A level. He’s a pronounced fly-ball pitcher, though that’s less of an issue at San Diego’s Petco Park than it would be in some settings.
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    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Latest On Padres' First Base Situation]]> 2017-11-27T05:54:50Z 2017-11-27T05:54:50Z
  • The Padres have some degree of interest in Eric Hosmer since he is younger than other free agent first base options, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes.  For instance, Lin hasn’t heard of anything serious about the Padres pursuing Carlos Santana, the second-best first baseman on the open market.  Hosmer is just 28, and thus if signed to a long-term deal, would likely still be a contributor once the Padres are ready to contend.  A player like Santana, who turns 32 in April, could already be declining by the time San Diego is done rebuilding, which could be at least two seasons from now.  Of course, the Padres also already have Wil Myers at first base, and a Hosmer signing is probably the only scenario that would see the team ask Myers to move to a corner outfield spot.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Sign Colten Brewer, Designate Kyle Lloyd]]> 2017-11-22T18:11:52Z 2017-11-22T18:07:23Z The Padres have announced the signing of righty Colten Brewer to a MLB contract. To clear a 40-man spot, the organization designated fellow right-hander Kyle Lloyd for assignment.

    Brewer, 25, was a minor-league free agent from the Yankees system. He struggled last year in his first attempt at Triple-A, coughing up 13 earned runs on 17 hits in ten innings. But Brewer compiled 41 1/3 innings of 1.31 ERA ball, with 9.4 K/9 against 2.4 BB/9, at the penultimate level of the minors.

    As for Lloyd, he made his first MLB start in 2017 but otherwise spent the year in the upper minors. Through 147 1/3 innings, Lloyd worked to a 5.01 ERA with 8.9 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Twins Have Shown Interest In Brad Hand]]> 2017-11-23T14:01:41Z 2017-11-22T16:37:32Z
  • The Twins will need to chase down some relief arms, too. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN reports on his podcast (audio link) that the club has engaged the Padres on Brad Hand and the Rays on Alex Colome. Minnesota was previously reported to have chatted with the Reds about Raisel Iglesias, and these new names fit the same general profile as established late-inning arms with affordable remaining control. All will come with appropriately lofty price tags. Berardino also tweets that Cubs lefty Justin Wilson might represent a target for the Twins. Having struggled last year upon landing in Chicago, Wilson could conceivably become available, though that’s far from certain. Minnesota eyed the power southpaw in the past, says Berardino, though that occurred before the current front office leadership came into office.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Players Added To The 40-Man Roster]]> 2017-11-21T01:48:28Z 2017-11-21T00:47:42Z As detailed earlier this morning at MLBTR, the deadline for Major League clubs to add players to the 40-man roster in order to protect them from next month’s Rule 5 Draft is tonight. Because of that, there will be literally dozens of moves between now and 8pm ET as teams make final determinations on who to protect and who to risk losing in next month’s Rule 5 draft. This process will lead to smaller-scale trades, waiver claims and DFAs, but for some clubs the only necessary moves will simply be to select the contracts of the prospects they wish to place on the 40-man roster. We’ll track those such moves in this post…

    Click to check in on other teams that have selected players to their 40-man rosters …

    Read more

    Kyle Downing <![CDATA[Looking for a Match in a Brad Hand Trade]]> 2017-11-18T18:48:16Z 2017-11-18T18:48:16Z After entertaining offers from a handful of teams leading up to the 2017 non-waiver trade deadline, the San Diego Padres opted not to trade reliever Brad Hand. But discussions are sure to heat up once again heading into the hot stove season. While the elite lefty is no sure bet to be dealt, the Friars look like a long shot to contend in a tough NL West division and could be well-served to exchange Hand for a package of young talent.

    Hand followed a breakout 2016 campaign with an equally phenomenal 2017 season. Among major-league relievers this past year, he finished 14th in ERA (2.16), 11th in xFIP (2.90), 21st in K/9 (11.80), 6th in innings pitched (79 1/3), and 4th in Win Probability Added (3.89). The former second-round pick accrued 21 saves despite not taking over the closer role until late July, and was valued at 1.7 fWAR.

    Every team in the major leagues would look better on paper by adding Hand to their bullpen. Relievers of his caliber are difficult to come by, let alone left-handers. He wouldn’t even be a rental; Hand is controllable through 2019 via arbitration. MLBTR projects him to be awarded just a $3.8MM salary in 2018, making him an incredibly payroll-friendly alternative to some of the big name free-agent relievers.

    Not every team can afford Hand in terms of prospects, however, which is how we can begin to eliminate some teams from the mix. When the Indians acquired lefty Andrew Miller from the Yankees at the 2016 trade deadline, they forked over four minor leaguers, including top prospects Clint Frazier and Justus Sheffield. While nobody would argue that Miller is the superior (and more established) relief pitcher, the two come with similar amounts of team control, while Miller’s contract guaranteed him $9MM per season.

    If the asking price for Hand is anything close to the return the Yankees got for Miller, then we can firmly remove the Cubs, Diamondbacks, Angels, Giants, Mariners and Orioles from the picture. Teams like the White Sox, A’s, Phillies and Reds are probably too far away from serious contention to consider a run at Hand. But beyond that, there would still appear to be a vast pool of potential suitors, leaving the Padres firmly in the driver’s seat.

    On paper, there are a few matches that make loads of sense. The Astros have a powerful roster that lacks only the presence of a dominant left-handed bullpen arm, and they certainly have the prospect depth to swing a trade. Likewise, the Dodgers would certainly benefit from another elite reliever to back Kenley Jansen, and their farm may be better than that of the Astros. The Brewers have a strong rotation that would benefit from another elite reliever who could help shorten games.

    My favorite potential match is the Cardinals. St. Louis has so many outfield prospects that it’ll be hard to roster them all when the Rule 5 Draft comes around, while the Padres would probably love to add some upside young talent at that position. Meanwhile, the Cards are in definite need of a closer. I expect the two teams will at least discuss the possibility of a Hand trade.

    Some other teams in dire need of bullpen help include the Twins, Rays, Rockies and Braves, though those teams might have other issues to address before thinning out their farm systems for a relief pitcher.

    Whether a trade materializes or not, it’s fair to expect Hand’s name will pop up in trade rumors a fair number of times this offseason. It would surely be exciting to see how a contender might utilize him in the playoffs.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Notes: Chacin, Stammen, Hosmer]]> 2017-11-17T18:52:25Z 2017-11-17T18:52:25Z
  • The Padres are interested in reunions with right-handers Jhoulys Chacin and Craig Stammen, general manager A.J. Preller told reporters at this week’s GM Meetings (link via’s AJ Cassavell). “From our standpoint, it’s about seeing how the next couple weeks play out,” said Preller. “They’re two guys we have interest in bringing back. We’ve got to see if we line up financially.” Cassavell reports that the Friars would consider a multi-year deal for either pitcher, though such a contract would likely need to come with a discounted second year. San Diego has a number of arms rising through the system and may not relish the idea of blocking those arms, though from my vantage point having either Chacin or Stammen around at an affordable rate is a good problem to have if all parties are performing well.
  • In a separate pair of Padres columns, Cassavell characterizes their interest in Eric Hosmer as little more than due diligence, while Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune hears a bit differently and reports that their interest goes “beyond the cursory level.” Cassavell notes that the Padres have kicked the tires on roughly 50 free agents thus far (most of them pitchers) as they look to get a full picture of the free-agent market. Lin, meanwhile, suggests that the Padres may be intrigued both by Hosmer’s intangible leadership qualities and by his 25-homer output despite being an extreme ground-ball hitter. A willingness to amend that approach and put the ball in the air more often could yield untapped power; I’d imagine that the Padres, who call spacious Petco Park their home, are also intrigued by the pop that Hosmer showed in his own cavernous home park (Kauffman Stadium) in spite of an approach that isn’t traditionally conducive to power.
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    Jason Martinez <![CDATA[Offseason Outlook: San Diego Padres]]> 2017-11-15T21:09:51Z 2017-11-15T14:02:35Z MLBTR is publishing Offseason Outlooks for all 30 teams.  Click here for the other entries in this series.

    As they enter the latter stages of their rebuild, the Padres have reasons for optimism. Coming off of their ninth losing season of the past decade, that might be hard to believe. But this 71-win team probably had no business winning more than 60, which speaks volumes of the job that manager Andy Green is doing. General manager A.J. Preller and the front office have stockpiled an abundance of impressive prospects through trades, international signings and the amateur draft. As a result, the farm system might be as deep and talented as it’s ever been — and is beginning to pay dividends at the MLB level.

    Guaranteed Contracts

    • Wil Myers, 1B: $66MM through 2022 (includes $1MM buyout for $20MM club option in 2023)
    • Clayton Richard, SP: $6MM through 2019
    • Yangervis Solarte, INF: $4.75MM through 2018 (includes $750K buyout for $5.5MM club option in 2019; contract also includes $8MM club option in 2020 with a $750K buyout)
    • Travis Wood, SP/RP: $750K through 2019 (includes $750K buyout for $8MM mutual option in 2019; Royals are paying all of Wood’s 2018 salary and half of the $1.5MM buyout in 2019)

    Arbitration-Eligible Players (projections via MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz)

    Other Financial Obligations

    Free Agents

    [San Diego Padres Depth Chart | San Diego Padres Payroll Outlook]

    Although there is still over $40MM due to players no longer on the team, payroll has been stripped down to include almost no guaranteed money in 2017 and beyond. The Padres’ estimated 2018 payroll, including projections for non-guaranteed contracts, is hovering around $50MM. Only the Phillies are lower, according to Roster Resource. In all likelihood, they should be able to spend much more than last offseason, when they committed a total of $10.9MM in free agency to sign four starting pitchers, shortstop Erick Aybar and reliever Craig Stammen.

    That doesn’t mean that they’ll sign Eric Hosmer, who the team has discussed internally, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. But their interest is an indication that they might be willing to sign a top free agent under the right circumstances. Hosmer is only entering his age-28 season and expected to command a contract that is at least five years in length. If he’s convinced that the Padres are a team on the rise and on a road to contend by 2019, he could be willing to sign on. Acquiring Giancarlo Stanton is another move that, while unlikely, isn’t completely out of the realm of possibility. If they were willing to take on a good-sized portion of Stanton’s contract, the Padres’ stockpile of talent would surely entice the Marlins — though they’d still have to convince him to approve of the swap.

    While Hosmer and Stanton are both long shots, it’s important to present those two cases in order to point out that the Padres are in good shape payroll-wise and have the trade chips to go after some of the best players in the game. It just might not happen this offseason.

    A more likely scenario is that they’ll continue to focus on letting their young players develop together while adding some reasonably-priced veterans to fill voids on the roster and bring leadership to the clubhouse.

    In 2017, several young players were given an opportunity to prove themselves. As would be expected, the results were mixed and there were plenty of peaks and valleys along the way. It didn’t go as well as the Padres had hoped, though, at least not offensively, or else hitting coach Alan Zinter wouldn’t have been fired with a month to go in the season. New hitting coach Matt Stairs will be tasked with helping the team’s young group of hitters progress and avoid the extended slumps that happened far too often. 

    Austin Hedges hit 18 home runs in his first full MLB season and is already considered to be one of the best defensive catchers in the game, making it easier for the Padres to live with his .214 batting average and .262 on-base percentage. Nevertheless, they’ll be hoping that the 25-year-old can become a much more disciplined hitter. Pairing him with a respected veteran like A.J. Ellis could help with his development.


    After signing a franchise-record $83MM contract extension prior to the season, Wil Myers did not take the leap from very good player to superstar. He did have 30 home runs and 20 stolen bases, but the 26-year-old finished with a .243/.328/.464 slash line — disappointing for a first baseman — and also struggled defensively after looking very comfortable at the position in 2016.

    A move back to the outfield for Myers isn’t out of the question, as it would allow the team to take advantage of a saturated market for first basemen—Lucas Duda or Mitch Moreland would be cheap one-year options. An already-crowded outfield picture makes it unlikely, though.

    Between Yangervis Solarte, Carlos Asuaje and Cory Spangenberg, the Padres are in pretty good shape at second and third base. Former Cubs prospect Christian Villanueva, who was impressive during a September call-up (11-for-32, 4 HR), could also get a look at the hot corner.

    There should be enough at-bats to go around, so it’s doubtful that the team will trade Solarte just to open up more playing time for the others. However, the switch-hitter should draw plenty of trade interest. With his team-friendly contract and ability to play all four infield spots, the 30-year-old switch-hitter is an excellent fit on several contending teams. Those attributes, in addition to his leadership skills, also make him a great fit in San Diego, though.

    While Solarte didn’t look terrible during his 24 starts at shortstop in 2017, he’s not likely to get an extended look at the position. The Opening Day starter is widely expected to be someone who is either acquired via trade or signed as a free agent this offseason. Zack Cozart, Alcides Escobar, J.J. Hardy and Jose Reyes are all free agent possibilities, while Freddy GalvisAdeiny Hechavarria, Jose Iglesias, Jurickson Profar and Jonathan Villar are potential trade targets.

    MLBTR predicts that the Padres will sign Cozart, the top free agent shortstop available, to a three-year, $42MM deal. With only a handful of teams in need of a shortstop, perhaps it wouldn’t be too shocking if the 32-year-old got only two years and a few million dollars less per season than our projection, which would help the Padres’ case. But if they really want to ensure that they can adequately fill what has been a revolving door of disappointment, they might not want to wait around too long in hopes of the price coming down. The bigger question is whether Cozart would want to sign with a team that isn’t quite ready to contend, even if he believes that they are a headed in the right direction.

    The Padres will also have two of the best prospects in baseball playing shortstop in the upper minors in 2018, with Luis Urias and Fernando Tatis Jr. likely to man the position in Triple-A and Double-A, respectively. Neither player is expected to make the full-time jump to the Majors until at least early 2019. And even then, Urias is probably a better fit at second base and Tatis, if necessary, could slide over to third base. Of course, the Pads would also have the option of sliding any new veteran acquisition to another spot in the future to accommodate the youngsters.

    Coming off of a strong rookie season, Manuel Margot is locked in as the team’s center fielder for the foreseeable future. The corner spots aren’t set in stone, although Jose Pirela should have the inside track for the left field job after an impressive 83-game stint in 2017. While it was obvious that the converted infielder has some work to do defensively, the transition had no effect on his hitting as he slashed .288/.347/.490 with 10 homers and 25 doubles in 344 plate appearances.

    Hunter Renfroe is the leading candidate to be the starting right fielder, but the job is not his to lose. His power potential is huge—he hit 26 homers, breaking the team’s rookie record—and he has one of the strongest throwing arms in baseball. But unlike Hedges, who can get away with his offensive deficiencies to some extent because of his plus defense as a catcher, Renfroe will not continue to get regular at-bats if he’s only reaching base at a .284 clip and striking out 29% of the time as he did in 2017. The 25-year-old learned that when was demoted to Triple-A in mid-August. He responded, however, with a strong showing during his month in the Minors followed by an impressive return to the big leagues in mid-September. He hit a three-run homer in his first at-bat after his promotion and then had a three-homer game two days later.

    Renfroe should face some stiff competition if Alex Dickerson returns to health after missing all of 2017 with a back injury. The left-handed batter slashed .255/.333/.455 with 10 homers in 285 plate appearances during his first extended look in the Majors back in 2016. He’s not a very good outfielder, but the Padres could use his bat in the middle of the order.

    Franchy Cordero isn’t quite ready to contribute, as evidenced by his struggles as a 22-year-old rookie (6 BB, 44 K in 99 plate appearances). But he could force his way into the picture if he continues to tear the cover off the ball in Triple-A, where he posted a .972 OPS with 17 homers, 21 doubles, 18 triples and 15 stolen bases. Matt Szczur and Travis Jankowski are also in the mix, although both are likely ticketed for part-time roles. Both players could draw trade interest from teams in search of a fourth outfielder.

    The Padres needed some semi-reliable innings-eaters at a very minimal cost in 2017 and they couldn’t have done much better than Jhoulys Chacin (180 1/3 IP, 16 quality starts) and Clayton Richard (197 1/3 IP, 14 quality starts), who both signed one-year, $1.75MM deals prior to the season. Even Trevor Cahill, who signed for the same amount, pitched effectively (when healthy) prior to being traded to the Royals in July.

    Richard is already back in the fold after signing a two-year, $6MM contract extension in September and it wouldn’t be a surprise if the team makes a strong effort to retain Chacin. They’ll have plenty of competition with starting pitchers in high demand and not many good ones available. But the Padres should be able to make a fairly competitive offer while also hoping that Chacin’s success at Petco Park—he was 9-3 with a 1.79 ERA in 16 home starts—will give them an edge if they’re not the highest bidder.

    Cahill, a San Diego native, is also a candidate to return, as is Tyson Ross, who might have his best shot at returning to form under Darren Balsley’s tutelage. Ex-Padres won’t be the only pitchers interested in working with Balsley, who is entering his 16th season as the team’s pitching coach. Chris Tillman, Hector Santiago and Yovani Gallardo are just a few of a long list of free agent pitchers looking to rebuild their value.

    Unlike last season, when it was necessary to bring in four veteran starters to fill out the rotation—Jered Weaver was the only one of the group who didn’t pitch well—the team is in much better shape heading into 2018. Dinelson Lamet was very good during his rookie campaign, flashing frontline starter ability on occasion, while sinker-baller Luis Perdomo looks to have solidified a spot in the back of the team’s rotation. Lefty Matt Strahm, the key return in the six-player trade with Kansas City in July, will compete for a rotation spot along with Robbie Erlin and Colin Rea, each of whom should be fully recovered from Tommy John surgery.

    A wave of top starting pitching prospects could also begin to arrive in the Majors by mid-season. Cal Quantrill, the eighth pick in the 2016 draft, along with Logan Allen, Eric Lauer, Joey Lucchesi and Jacob Nix, are all expected to begin the season in either Double-A or Triple-A. It wouldn’t be a surprise if any one of them is knocking down the door to the big leagues at some point in 2018. Another wave of what is likely an even more impressive group of starting pitchers could begin to arrive in 2019. Help appears to be on the way.

    Surprisingly, top reliever Brad Hand remained with the Padres past the trade deadline. He took full advantage of his first opportunity as a closer, posting a 2.15 ERA with a 12.1 K/9 and 19 saves in 21 chances after taking on the gig in late July. As teams got every last bit out of their top relievers in the post-season, it was clear that a lefty who is capable of pitching multiple innings and dominating against both right-handed and left-handed hitters is extremely valuable for any playoff team. In fact, Hand’s price tag might’ve gone up since July. Preller should get plenty of strong offers and he’s not likely to pass on the chance to cash in on an elite reliever at what is likely to be peak value.

    If Hand is traded, the Padres will almost certainly be in the market for a veteran closer who can hold down the fort for a few months before being flipped to a contender prior to the trade deadline. Former Padres Huston Street and Fernando Rodney would be low-cost options.

    The group of Padres relievers expected to bridge the gap to the closer is a bit on the inexperienced side, but they were a big reason why the team was much better than expected in 2017 and highly competitive, for the most part. Kirby Yates (14.1 K/9, 20 holds) and Phil Maton (9.6 K/9, 8 holds) were effective as the team’s primary setup men, while lefties Jose Torres, Buddy Baumann and Kyle McGrath all pitched well down the stretch. The team would gladly welcome Craig Stammen back, but he is likely to parlay his strong season into a multi-year deal with a contender.

    If Carter Capps can ever come close to returning to his pre-injury form, the Padres will have themselves another late-inning option. He did not look very good over a year-and-a-half removed from Tommy John surgery and now he’ll need to bounce back from his September surgery for Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. Strahm could also factor into the late-inning mix if he doesn’t win a rotation spot. As a rookie in 2016, he looked very comfortable in a relief role for the Royals, posting a 1.23 ERA with 30 strikeouts in 21 innings.

    Even with a successful offseason, the best-case scenario for the 2018 Padres is probably no better than a .500 record. And that’s fine. It’s another step in the right direction. For proof that a successful rebuild takes patience, look no further than the World Champion Houston Astros. They endured six consecutive losing seasons from 2009-2014, including three consecutive years with at least 106 losses. General manager Jeff Luhnow began the rebuild immediately after he was hired following the 2011 season. The expectation was that they’d be bad for a few seasons. And they were. Four years later, though, he had his team in the playoffs. Six years later, they were celebrating their first World Series title. They are also set up to be perennial playoff contenders.

    If the Padres can stay the course, it’s not a stretch to think that could follow a similar path.

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Getting Calls On Solarte, Spangenberg, Asuaje]]> 2017-11-15T05:33:12Z 2017-11-15T05:33:12Z The Padres have built up a number of options to use at second base or third base in 2018 and beyond, so much so that they’re receiving calls on infielders Yangervis Solarte, Cory Spangenberg and Carlos Asuaje, reports’s AJ Cassavell“That’s an area where we’ve created some Major League depth,” GM A.J. Preller said. “…It gives us a group of infielders that we’re excited about. And it’s a group that, other teams, they see that depth as well.” Solarte is the most established of the bunch and is cost-controlled through 2020 thanks to last offseason’s contract extension. He’ll earn $4.125MM in 2018 and has a pair of options valued at $5.5MM and $8MM for the following two seasons. Spangenberg is arbitration-eligible through that same period of time, while Asuaje can still be controlled all the way through the 2023 season.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Padres Have Interest In Eric Hosmer, Alcides Escobar]]> 2017-11-14T13:38:00Z 2017-11-14T13:32:22Z The Padres have at least held some internal chats about the possibility of pursuing first baseman Eric Hosmer, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports. That mostly serves to illustrate how wide open things are at this stage of the offseason, Rosenthal suggests, and there’s little reason at present to view the Pads as a serious suitor. Nevertheless, it seems reasonably notable to hear of the connection. For one thing, it suggests that San Diego GM A.J. Preller is amenable to moving Wil Myers back to the outfield in some circumstances; for another, it hints that the club may be willing to lay out some real cash if an appealing opportunity arises.

    • Perhaps another former K.C. standout would be a more achievable target for the Padres. According to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag, the team is looking for a “stopgap” at short, with Alcides Escobar among the possibilities. While short would appear to be the natural area for the team to make a more significant investment, Heyman says there’s a belief that top prospect Fernando Tatis Jr. could make it to the majors as soon as late 2018. It does seem fair to consider, though, that a few factors might conceivably leave San Diego looking to make a more significant acquisition up the middle. For one thing, Tatis barely reached the Double-A level last year and won’t turn 19 until January. For another, the Friars could still consider adding a quality shortstop that could be moved elsewhere on the diamond if and when Tatis forces his way up.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Outrighted: Twins, Phillies, Rays, Cardinals, Padres, Dodgers, Pirates]]> 2017-11-07T07:21:15Z 2017-11-07T03:40:14Z A variety of teams cleared 40-man space today. Some of the moves are reflected elsewhere on the site, but we’ll round up the others right here:

    • The Twins have outrighted catcher Chris Gimenez and left Ryan O’Rourke, as’ Rhett Bollinger tweets. Gimenez could have been retained for a projected $1MM arbitration salary, but Minnesota elected not to commit that much cash (and a roster spot) despite Gimenez’s 225 plate appearances of roughly league-average hitting in 2017. He tells Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer that he’ll likely elect to return to the open market, but would be open to a return (links to Twitter). As for O’Rourke, he was said to be exploring ways of hastening his return from Tommy John surgery, but Minnesota isn’t willing to gamble on the lefty’s recovery at this time.
    • Infielder Pedro Florimon and righty Jesen Therrien are now free agents after being outrighted off of the Phillies 40-man, per a club announcement. The 30-year-old Florimon has made his way onto a major league roster in each of the past seven seasons, compiling a .209/.269/.308 slash in 791 plate appearances but providing enough with the glove to keep earning return trips. The 24-year-old Therrien was knocked around in 15 relief appearances for the Phils this year, but did turn in 57 1/3 frames of 1.41 ERA ball (with 10.2 K/9 and 1.4 BB/9) during his time in the upper minors.
    • The Rays outrighted catcher Curt Casali, outfielder Cesar Puello, and righty Shawn Tolleson, as Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. Casali played a bigger role on the 2016 MLB outfit and posted only a .698 OPS at Triple-A. The 26-year-old Puello has bounced around of late and struggled in a brief go at the bigs, but did manage a productive .327/.377/.526 slash in 379 plate appearances at the highest level of the minors (none of which came with a Tampa Bay affiliate). Tolleson required Tommy John surgery in May, so he’ll likely be looking for an organization to rehab with.
    • Departing the Cardinals’ 40-man were infielder Alex Mejia and catcher Alberto Rosario, according to’s Jenifer Langosch (via Twitter). Mejia struggled mightily in the bigs as a 26-year-old rookie, but slashed .291/.341/.413 in his 475 plate appearances in the upper minors. As for Rosario, who is thirty years of age, there just hasn’t been much opportunity for time behind the MLB plate.
    • Backstop Hector Sanchez and righty Tim Melville took free agency from the Padres after clearing outright waivers, per AJ Cassavell of (Twitter link). Sanchez, a 28-year-old switch-hitter who has seen action in each of the past seven MLB seasons, will surely be targeted as a depth acquisition by other organizations. Melville, who’s also 28, worked to a 2.95 ERA with 8.5 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9 in 76 1/3 Triple-A innings — his best results in the minors — but was bombed in brief MLB time.
    • The Dodgers outrighted first baseman/outfielder O’Koyea Dickson, as J.P. Hoornstra of the Southern California News Group tweets. Dickson, 27, briefly touched the majors in 2017 but spent the bulk of his time at Triple-A for the third-straight season. After putting up big numbers there in 2016, Dickson managed a career-best 24 home runs over 458 plate appearances in his most recent campaign, but slipped to a .328 on-base percentage.
    • Finally, the Pirates outrighted lefty Dan Runzler,’s Adam Berry reports on Twitter. He’ll head back to free agency after refusing an assignment. Runzler, 32, made it back to the majors after a four-year absence, but only saw four innings in eight appearances. He pitched to a 3.05 ERA in 41 1/3 Triple-A innings, managing only 7.8 K/9 against 4.8 BB/9 but also generating typically strong groundball numbers.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Cubs Claim Cory Mazzoni, Outright Leonys Martin]]> 2017-11-06T22:32:05Z 2017-11-06T22:22:26Z The Cubs have announced a series of roster moves as teams around the league continue to trim rosters. Chicago claimed righty Cory Mazzoni off waivers from the Padres, adding a new name to the 40-man. Leaving the MLB roster is outfielder Leonys Martin; he’ll be replaced by righty Matt Carasiti, whose contract was selected.

    Mazzoni, a former second-round draft pick who recently turned 28, has been shelled in minimal MLB time. But he put up some exciting numbers at Triple-A, allowing just two earned runs in 20 1/3 innings while racking up 31 strikeouts against just three walks. Despite those eyebrow-raising tallies, Mazzoni made it through much of the rest of the league on the wire.

    As for Martin, he will have the right to elect free agency and seems likely to take it. He was a surprising mid-season acquisition for the Cubs after falling out of favor with the Mariners. Martin posted anemic offensive numbers all year long but still found himself onto the Cubs’ postseason roster. Given his well-regarded defense and baserunning, along with a history that includes some stretches of passable hitting, there ought to be a fair bit of interest in Martin, who is just 29 years of age.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Stairs Discusses Points Of Emphasis For Young Padres Hitters]]> 2017-11-01T17:15:03Z 2017-11-01T17:15:03Z
  • Newly minted Padres hitting coach Matt Stairs plans to bring an emphasis of on-base percentage and selectivity to the lineup, writes’s AJ Cassavell. Cassavell notes that Stairs’ famous one-liner, “Swing like you live: hard,” leads to some misconceptions about his philosophy; Stairs doesn’t necessarily preach swinging often but believes in being aggressive when deciding to do so. “I’ve always been a guy that always preaches — even when I wasn’t coaching — about not giving at-bats away, being a stubborn hitter,” said Stairs. “…I’m a firm believer in passing the baton and taking the walk. Let the guy behind you pick you up.” The Padres ranked 25th in MLB with a 7.7 percent walk rate last year and somewhat incredibly finished the season with a sub-.300 OBP as a collective unit, ranking last in the Majors at .299.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Jarred Cosart, Christian Friedrich Elect Free Agency After Clearing Outright Waivers]]> 2017-10-30T21:54:55Z 2017-10-30T21:53:54Z Two Padres hurlers, Jarred Cosart and Christian Friedrich, have elected free agency after being outrighted off of the team’s 40-man roster. The club announced the moves today.

    Cosart, 27, was projected to earn $1.3MM via arbitration. The Friars obviously weren’t willing to stake that much on a rebound for a pitcher that has dealt with arm problems. Cosart will spend the winter working back from elbow surgery, the details and outlook of which are not really clear.

    Since landing in San Diego — as a buy-low candidate included in everyone’s favorite quirky 2016 deadline deal — Cosart has posted a 5.58 ERA through 61 1/3 innings. With as many strikeouts as walks (42 apiece) on his ledger, there were clearly concerns about performance even when he was healthy.

    Meanwhile, Friedrich was slated to take home something in the ballpark of his projected $1.79MM arbitration value. The 30-year-old lefty did not appear in 2017 while dealing with elbow problems of his own. In total, he owns 5.37 ERA across 296 2/3 MLB innings.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Skip Schumaker To Become Padres' First Base Coach]]> 2017-10-28T21:57:36Z 2017-10-28T21:57:36Z The Padres are set to name Skip Schumaker their first base coach, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune was among those to report (Twitter link). Schumaker, who had been the Padres’ assistant to baseball operations and player development, will take over for the reassigned Johnny Washington. As part of his new role, Schumaker will also be in charge of the team’s baserunning and work with its outfielders, AJ Cassavell of tweets. Schumaker garnered plenty of firsthand experience on the bases and in the field as a utilityman with three major league teams from 2005-15.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Grant: Padres Could Pursue Jurickson Profar Trade]]> 2017-10-28T15:36:43Z 2017-10-28T15:36:43Z
  • Rangers infielder/outfielder Jurickson Profar could draw offseason trade interest from the Reds, Padres and other teams, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News observes. The Reds scouted Profar “at length” when he was at Triple-A this season, per Grant, who notes that Padres general manager and ex-Rangers executive A.J. Preller is already familiar with the former top prospect. The switch-hitting Profar, 24, spent most of 2017 in the minors, where he hit .287/.383/.428 in 383 plate appearances. He has been far less successful across 718 career major league PAs, having batted .229/.309/.329. Thanks to his underwhelming performance with the Rangers and his out-of-options status, Profar looks like a strong trade candidate heading into the winter.
  • ]]>
    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Padres Make Coaching Changes]]> 2017-10-27T18:49:54Z 2017-10-27T18:49:54Z
  • The Padres will move first base coach Johnny Washington to the assistant hitting coach role and outfield coach Jon Matthews has been reassigned to a new role, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports (Twitter links).  2017 was Washington’s only season as a first base coach; he spent the rest of his nine-year coaching career as a hitting coach at various levels of the Dodgers’ and Padres’ farm systems.  Lin notes that the Padres will fill their first base coaching vacancy from within the organization.
  • ]]>
    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Padres To Hire Matt Stairs As Hitting Coach]]> 2017-10-27T17:01:23Z 2017-10-27T16:45:02Z The Padres are hiring Matt Stairs as the team’s new hitting coach, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reports (via Twitter).  Earlier today, FanRag’s Robert Murray reported that Stairs was the “strong favorite” for the job.

    Stairs made his pro coaching debut in 2017, working as the Phillies’ hitting coach and drawing praise for his role in helping the team’s many young hitters.  Still, with Philadelphia’s coaching staff in limbo after Pete Mackanin was removed from the manager’s job, there was already speculation that Stairs could depart for a more stable position elsewhere.  Stairs will now move into another rebuilding situation with another collection of young players in San Diego, plus the added challenge of generating offense in traditionally pitcher-friendly Petco Park.

    Stairs spent the 18th of his 19 big league seasons with the Padres in 2010, hitting .232/.306/.475 with six homers over 111 plate appearances.  The Canadian slugger played for 12 different teams over his career, hitting 265 homers and posting a very solid .262/.356/.477 career slash line, while also setting a new MLB record with 23 career pinch-hit home runs.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Agency Notes: Fernando Tatis Jr., Andrew Toles]]> 2017-10-26T22:19:30Z 2017-10-26T20:06:13Z A couple of recent agency switches over in the NL West…

    • Padres top prospect Fernando Tatis Jr. is represented by MVP Sports, as’s Jerry Crasnick tweets. There had been indication that Tatis was changing representation, but it seems that is not the case. The 18-year-old wunderkind raked at a .281/.390/.520 pace as one of the youngest regulars in the Class-A Midwest League before receiving a late-season bump to Double-A. Tatis ranks as one of the game’s top overall prospects (No. 15 on Keith Law’s midseason top 50; No. 51 on’s top 100; No. 101, per Baseball America). While Tatis has yet to make his MLB debut, it’s not inconceivable that the highly touted second-generation talent could do so late in the 2018 campaign. He figures to open next year in Double-A, so a midseason move to Triple-A or even a jump directly to the Majors from Double-A is plausible.
    • Dodgers outfielder Andrew Toles, who missed the majority of the season with a torn ACL, is now a client of Marc Anthony’s Magnus Sports, tweets ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick. Toles burst onto the scene with the 2016 Dodgers, hitting .314/.365/.505 in 115 plate appearances down the stretch before shining with an .878 OPS in 11 postseason contests. He was off to a slower but still-solid start in 2017, batting .271/.314/.458 with five homers in 102 PAs when he suffered the ligament tear while trying to preserve Julio Urias’ no-hit bid with a running grab in the left-field corner. Toles spent the remainder of the season on the 60-day disabled list, accruing big league service time after undergoing surgery to repair the ligament. He’ll finish out the year with a year and 87 days of MLB service time, meaning he’d be eligible for arbitration (at the earliest) following the 2019 season and eligible for free agency following the 2022 campaign.

    This agency news is now reflected in MLBTR’s Agency Database, which contains representation info on more than 2,500 Major League and Minor League players. If you see any errors or omissions within the database, please let us know via email: