Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports
I started this article last night. It took about 3 hours of research. I didn’t get it finished before bed. My plan was to finish it today. Dang it, that’s exactly what I’m going to do! I don’t care if Josh Byrnes tried to ruin my plans. I can only hope that by finishing this and pointing out what might have been, he finds it slightly harder to sleep tonight. Much like a lot of the more die hard fans will from now until Opening Day. The day we see what it was that Byrnes and company were trying to put together. Here is the original article:
Last week, Bill Center quoted Josh Byrnes as saying:
"By the time the Winter Meetings end, we will have done something. We’re lined up on a few trade ideas over the next couple weeks."
There isn’t much information coming out of San Diego, or anywhere for that matter, about who the Padres could be targeting. Center mentions that he has heard Domonic Brown mentioned. Byrnes is clearly targeting a power bat, most likely at a corner outfield position and most likely left-handed based on what Byrnes has said in the past about the lack of hitting against right handed pitchers.
So who might Byrnes have on speed dial these days? I’ve come up with a likelihood rating for potential targets based on several different factors that I think could make the Padres and another team good partners. Here are the top 6 candidates:
#6 – Domonic Brown (Phillies)
Brown ended up in a tie with the 5th place finisher with 50 points total. Out of the seven categories that I used for these ratings, Brown scored a 17 out of 20 in the amount of trade rumors floating around. He also scored a 10 out of 10 in the power category. Not really a surprise. Brown had an outstanding break out season with a slash of .272/.324/.494 to go along with 27 HR and 83 RBI. Why would the Phillies trade him? I don’t know. Well, that’s not true, I can kind of see why the Padres and Phillies match up as partners. The Padres are in need of a right handed bat to go in the middle of the order. That bat would most likely need to be Chase Headley if this was to happen at all. Therefore, I think this trade is not very likely. The Padres would rather deal some young pitching to acquire this left handed bat. I also don’t think it’s a good idea for the Phillies to trade Brown. But, that’s just my two cents.
#5 – Michael Brantley (Indians)
Like I said above, Brantley was tied with Brown at 50 points. I moved Brantley ahead in the rankings based on the fact that there is actually a chance of the Indians trading him. The Indians have an excess of outfielders after the signing of David Murphy. Brantley’s scores were pretty consistent across the board but, the highest rating for him was a 10 out of 20 in the trade history department. This rating is based on whether the teams have traded in the past, the nature of the trade and whether one team got over on the other. The most recent trade between the Indians and Padres was on Halloween when the Padres sent pitcher Colt Hynes to the Tribe for cash. Brantley’s lowest rating was in the power category after only hitting 10 home runs last season. Heading into his age 27 season, the Padres could hope for as much as 18 home runs but, obviously the team would prefer to trade for a definite power bat.
#4 – Lucas Duda (Mets)
Duda’s numbers last season were not incredibly impressive. But, if the Padres really just need someone who can hit right handers, he could be the guy. Not the ideal guy to get but, he also wouldn’t cost as much as some others. Duda’s highest score was in the trade rumor category. A Google search of “Lucas Duda” and “Trade” turns up a lot of results. A lot of different blogs seem to want their team to pursue either he or Ike Davis from the Mets. Usually, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. The Mets have been rumored to be talking to Curtis Granderson and possibly Robinson Cano. Even though it wouldn’t clear much salary, anything helps if you have to pay someone $300 million.
#3 – Josh Hamilton (Angels)
Boom! How do you like that? Anybody wanna see Josh Hamilton in a Padres uni? No? Ok. Well, let me explain myself. One of the criteria is whether the player is overpaid or coming off injury. Josh Hamilton is always injured and believe it or not, he is slightly overpaid. Last year Hamilton had 443 AB’s against right handed pitching. He slashed .272/.339/.463 and had 15 HR’s. The Padres could possibly add $8 million or so to the payroll. Hamilton is due to make $17 mil this year. It would take the Angels sending some money over in order to make this work. Call me crazy but, I think they would pay what they need to in order to get out of Pujols or Hamilton’s bad contracts. Next year Hamilton’s salary goes up to $25 mil. Therefore, trading for him would spell doom for Chase Headley. But, hey, I’m just spitballing here.
#2 – Nate Schierholtz (Cubs)
Could the California native be heading back home? Only time will tell. Schierholtz had 20 HR’s against RHP’s last season. Man, could the Padres use that in the middle of the lineup or what? I think Schierholtz is exactly what Josh Byrnes thinks of when he thinks about adding a left hand hitting corner outfielder. Schierholtz’s highest score was in the rumors section. Rumors abound in relation to almost all Cubs players. The club is in complete rebuild mode right now and no doubt would have a lot of interest in a young arm or two. The Cubs and Padres have made pretty good trade partners in the past. This appears to be a match made in Heaven. Like I said before, only time will tell.
#1 – Matt Joyce (Rays)
Matt Joyce’s scores in my extremely scientific, trade potential ratings are off the charts. His overall score came out to 71 out of 100. How do I love Matt Joyce? Let me count the ways:
1 – Trade rumors, trade rumors, trade rumors. Even after non-tendering Sam Fuld, the Rays could still stand to part with Joyce. There are a plethora of good young outfielder’s in Tampa. They will be alright without him. Plus, we know they love their prospects. We got prospects.
2 – The Padres and Rays have made decent trade partners before. The Jason Bartlett trade is one example. Hey, I said decent.
3 – Joyce hits righties. 16 HR’s last year.
4 – He’s cheap.
5 – Relatively young.
6 – Controllable.
7 – Wouldn’t cost much in terms of prospects.
There you have it. Anything could happen during the GM meetings. Hopefully the Padres are able to fill a need without breaking the bank or destroying the farm. It’s going to be an exciting month. there’s only 73 days till Spring Training! Who is about to find out that they are heading there in a Padres uniform?
This was all written prior to today’s trade of Luke Gregerson to the A’s for Seth Smith. Seth Smith was one of my possibilities, in case you’re wondering. Out of the 15 players I ranked, he was 14th. Ahead of only Alex Gordon. Out of 100 possible points, Seth had a 31. His hitting against righties rating was a 6 out of 10. His power against righties was a 3 out of 10. I’m at a loss right now. I’m going to spend the rest of the night trying to find the silver lining. There will be a new article up soon. If I find it.