Padres News: Union Tribune Padres Chat Recap: Carlos Quentin, James Shields, Yonder Alonso

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In the most recent chat with fans on the San Diego Union Tribune website, Dennis Lin addressed several fan questions regarding the San Diego Padres. He covered everything from the rotation, to Carlos Quentin and Cole Hamels, and even the most pressing issue in the country right now, deflate-gate. Here’s the highlights:

Things started out with a question of Yonder Alonso‘s standing with General Manager A.J. Preller. Lin believes that Alonso’s leash will be even shorter now that the front office that acquired him has been ousted. Preller already dealt the other front line prospect acquired in the Mat Latos trade in Yasmani Grandal. Lin does still think that Alonso still could be a valuable part of the lineup though, citing his left-handedness as his biggest asset.

The rotation was an oft discussed item throughout the chat. Lin believes that the rotation depth isn’t quite where it needs to be right now saying:

"“As much as the Padres like their top three starters, only Ian Kennedy seems like a sure bet for 30 starts. Cashner made just 19 last year, and Ross is coming off his first full season as a starter. After these guys, you have pitchers who are either injury risks or varying degrees of untested. So yes, in that sense, I believe the Padres could use a bit more rotation insurance. Really, you can never have enough.”"

Chad Billingsley, Paul Maholm, Kyle Kendrick and even James Shields are all free agent starters still on the market to help in the depth department. Speaking of Shields, when asked about the Padres interest in him he rated it at 2.5 on a scale from 1 to 10. He says that he hasn’t heard the Padres interest level exceed “tire-kicking interest” at this point.

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Another depth option for the Padres’ rotation could be Cory Luebke and Casey Kelly and Lin provided updates on both. He says that he’s heard that Kelly will be ready for the start of camp, while Luebke might need an extra week or two, but could still be ready alongside Kelly.

Cole Hamels was also asked about. Lin doesn’t think the Padres are going to be major players in the Hamels sweepstakes unless the price begins to drop. That seems to be every potential suitor’s mindset right now so the price could change, but based on Ruben Amaro Jr.’s track record and public comments, it isn’t something that should be expected.

If the Padres are to make a major roster move at some point before Opening Day, Lin expects it to be a trade of Carlos Quentin or Cameron Maybin. To be even more specific he thinks it’ll be Quentin getting moved with the Padres paying a significant portion of his salary.

Check the U-T next week for their next chat and here at Friars on Base for the recap.

Next: Yoan Moncada Works Out For Padres

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