Padres News: Missing Out on Yoan Moncada Could Benefit the Padres


The Padres were in the mix for one of the top free agent infielder and were one of finalists, only to get topped by the Boston Red Sox.

Sound familiar? It should the Padres started the offseason in hot pursuit of third baseman Pablo Sandoval, even placing the top bid for him, but the Kung Fu Panda decided to go Boston.

Then this week top Cuban Prospect, Yoan Moncada, reportedly opted to sign with the Red Sox who bested the Padres offer by $5 million.

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Had the Padres signed Sandoval how would have the offseason been different? They reportedly offered him a deal for more than $100 million and over five years.

The Padres have committed $27.5 million in 2015 to James Shields, Matt Kemp and Justin Upton and will be paying Shields and Kemp $36.5 million from 2016 to 2018. If Sandoval was on the books for at least the $19 million AAV he’s getting in Boston do they take on Kemp’s contract? Do they pony up the cash for Shields? Would an extension for Upton be completely off the table?

At least one of those would very likely be true and the Padres may not have positioned themselves in the way they did. Missing out on Sandoval might have been the best thing that happened to the Padres this offseason.

The same kind of effect could happen with Yoan Moncada. Due to the spending restrictions on international free agents under the age of 23 the Red Sox can’t sign international free agents for a signing bonus over $300,000 until 2017.

So for the next two international signing seasons, they aren’t going to be able to be in on any of the top end talent. When the Padres hired A.J. Preller, he was known for his presence in the international market. Incurring all of those penalties would render his best skill almost useless.

Preller was able to help the Rangers build a strong farm system through the international market signing guys like Elvis Andrus, Neftali Feliz, Alexi Ogando, Jurickson Profar, Rougned Odor, Leonys Martin and many others.

With a lot of the organizational depth from the system being trading in the offseason the international market is a way to help rebuild the farm system, especially with a guy like Preller.

Don’t get me wrong adding Moncada, who would immediately be the Padres top prospect, would be a great addition. With projections that compare him to Robinson Cano and Chase Utley, if he’s even half of what’s expected of him he’d be a solid player.

The issue is banking two years of international signings on one 19-year-old is a massive risk. The Red Sox are able to afford the risk one because of their deep pockets they have the ability of building their team any which way they please, and because of their already deep organization. If Moncada flops Boston will be hurt, but they have the ability to absorb the hit a lot easier than the Padres.

Only time will tell how all of this turns out. Whether or not Moncada was worth a $60 million investment and how the Padres allocate the money that they were ready to commit to Moncada. I trust in Preller’s ability to extract talent out of the international market and now there’s a boatload of money to spend that the wouldn’t have been otherwise.

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