After a productive Day 1 of the 2014 FanSided Faux-Winter Meetings, fellow Friars on Base staff writer, Daryll Dorman, and myself continued to work towards making the San Diego Padres a legitimate playoff threat in 2015.
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Day 2 Goals:
1. Acquire a left-handed relief pitcher to replace Alex Torres in the bullpen. *Torres and Cashner were traded to the Boston Red Sox on Day One in exchange for Yoenis Cespedes and three top prospects.
2. Reduce the guaranteed team payroll for 2015. By acquiring Yoenis Cespedes from the Red Sox, we actually increased our payroll as opposed to decreasing it, which was one of our main goals on Day One. It is now a top priority to unload heavy contracts in order create payroll flexibility to negotiate a contract extension with Cespedes before the season starts. This will mean aggressively trying to move Carlos Quentin, Joaquin Benoit, or Ian Kennedy to an American League team.
3. Add another bat. Cespedes is a great starting point for our offense, but he wont be able to carry the team alone.
4. Be a player in the free agent market.
Needs that we felt have to be addressed via trade or free agency include: 1B, 3B, SS, OF, RP
After a flurry of inquiries on Day One, Day Two was relatively quiet in comparison.
*No teams checked in on Ross, Benoit, or Maybin on Day 2
Teams we contacted to gauge interest in Benoit: New York Yankees (Yanks Go Yard), Toronto Blue Jays (Jays Journal), Oakland Athletics (Swingin A’s), Houston Astros (Climbing Tal’s Hill), Chicago White Sox (Southside Showdown), Minnesota Twins (Puckett’s Pond), Los Angeles Angels (Halo Hangout)
The Indians offered Lonnie Chisenhall for Ian Kennedy.
The Padres have submitted an offers for the following free agents:
Josh Johnson: 1 year, $2MM, club option for 2015 at $5MM
7 years, $88MM
7 years, $105MM
*We were told by Yasmany’s agent that our agent was considerably lower than other offers on the table and that we would have to submit a new offer if we wanted to gain consideration as a possible destination
To be honest, neither Daryll or myself thought we would find a trading partner to take on the physical and financial risk of Carlos Quentin. We were under the impression that if we were able to trade him, we would end up eating a large portion of his remaining contract. To trade him at all was a win-win-win-win. We cleared space in an already crowded outfield situation (Cespedes, Maybin, Smith, Quentin, Venable, Liriano, Spangenberg), we accomplished our goal of creating payroll flexibility, we added two top 20 prospects from another organization’s farm system, and the two prospects we added are both left-handed pitchers.
John Lamb was a former rising star in the Royals organization who ultimately succumbed to Tommy John surgery which forced him to miss most of 2011 and 2012. Lamb had a horrible 2013 campaign, but had a much better 2014 in which he posted a 3.97 ERA with 131 strikeouts in 138 innings for the Royals Triple-A affiliate. We feel that under the guidance of Darren Balsley and Bud Black, Lamb can significantly lower his ERA and compete for a bullpen roster spot during Spring Training. Lamb is a start, but we aren’t comfortable calling him our “replacement” for Torres at the moment. We will likely pursue other left handed pitchers before the end of the Faux-Winter Meetings.
Cody Reed was drafted by the Royals in the second round of the 2013 draft. The 6’5 lefty has posted 5.62 ERA through two minor league seasons.
We feel that we were more than active in free agency today and are hopefully now the front runner for Tomas. Unfortunately, we aren’t given the specifics of the other “blind bids” so we won’t know until later today if our offer was competitive enough to land Tomas. We are also considering a higher salaried short term contract.