Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) Follow @stokes_hunter21
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It certainly is a different feel to the winter of the Padres in the 2015 offseason than it was the 2014 Season. I never bought into the premise of how A.J. Preller built the team last year.
It was one of the easiest over/under wagers of the year. It ended in the club losing more games than they did the previous year – despite running a higher payroll.
In an Infield that is already lacking power, this latest move furthers the need to bring in more hitters.
To be fair the club was staring down Melvin Upton Jr. as their Starting CF before bringing in Jay. Alex Dickerson in LF and Matt Kemp are slated to be the corner Outfielders for next year. Kemp did dive in 100 RBI, and played a healthy season, but really is he anymore than an American League Designated Hitter.
Speaking of poor fielders. Derek Norris should be shopped to an American League club now that the Padres have traded for Christian Bethancourt, and are also going to give Austin Hedges a good look as a Backstopper in 2016.
At 3rd Base this coming year, Yangervis Solate will patrol the position. He actually has slightly better numbers thus far to the production that the departed Chase Headley is putting up in New York. This trade doesn’t look too bad when you consider Headley makes $13 MIL per year – while Solarte is not even Arbitration Eligible until next year.
At Shortstop, the club has Alex Amarista, and he of the .599 Career OPS, as the Starting player. I think somehow the club will sign the one player they need the most here in Ian Desmond for the position. Desmond would give the Infield a definite influx of power they need from the slot.
At 1B, the club will look to Wil Myers to have a break through season 2 years after his successful rookie season. The former Rays player enters his 4th year – and he has not seen action in more than 88 Games thus far.
He can and would be a decent producer if he can stay healthy, but the jury is still out. Keep the meat wagon handy.
Journeyman Brett Wallace may provide a pivotal Utility role with the squad – following his .895 OPS in 106 AB stint with San Diego in 2015. He can play both 3B and 1B – and some DH in Interleague.
The Pitching Staff is still buoyed by a decent rotation. The club may look to deal James Shields, who can opt out of his current contract after this year. He will likely do that if he remains in a San Diego uniform unless he has catastrophically bad numbers.
The Relief Core is headed up by Nick Vincent and Brandon Maurer as guys that even had remotely good campaigns in 2015 for the squad. There is not set Closer as of right now and that is probably meaningless at this point anyway.
The worst part about the current roster is the money given out to three players that make almost 50% of the earnings for the team salary this next year.
Melvin Upton JR. will fleece the club for $15.5 MIL, and Matt Kemp in the neighborhood of $18 MIL. Shields earns a cool $21 MIL for 2016. These deals are preventing them from signing any real Free Agent with substance.
For an organization that hosts the 2016 ALL – Star Game, the mood around San Diego is sure going to be bleak.
Cashner and Ross are in the 3rd and 2nd year of Arbitration – which means the clock is running out for Team Control. Really they should trade all Starters 1 – 4.
The club needs to regroup and build the club the proper way from the ground up. It is going to be a massive struggle – in a NL West Division that has 3 good teams with the Arizona D’Backs, San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers for the next 4 – 5 years.
At least Preller has learned his lesson. The Kimbrel trade to Boston was a great start to replenish the Minor League System.
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A Big thanks goes out to our chief writer Hunter Stokes for preparing today’s feature post.
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