Padres News: Is An Upton Trade Looming?

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With about one third of the games completed in the 2015 season, we can no longer use the excuse “well, it’s still early.”  54 games have passed and we can surmise that the San Diego Padres are an improved ball club, but are still missing the glue to bring all of their talents together.

Whether this is due to a drastic change in player personnel, the lack of consistency from “Captains” Matt Kemp and Jedd Gyorko, injuries to key players like Yonder Alonso and Wil Myers, or the questionable leadership of seasoned manager Bud Black, something needs to be changed to get this team into the playoffs.

The off-season acquisitions were exciting, “but if the Padres keep slipping further and further behind the Dodgers and Giants, do they reverse as aggressively and try to recoup the large prospect trove they expended during the winter?”, Joel Sherman of the New York Post asks.

It would be sad to Justin Upton, our best player, go but this may have been the plan from the beginning.  Recall that $18 million of Matt Kemps’ 2015 salary is being paid by the Los Angeles Dodgers.  AJ Preller may have boxed himself in here.  When he is forced to open his wallet to Kemp in 2016 it will be difficult to resign and pay Upton, especially with the expensive Craig Kimbrel and Melvin Upton also on the books.

Upton was open to an extension when he was traded to San Diego, but only if a long term deal was sorted out in Spring Training.  AJ Preller didn’t pull the trigger, but some say the move to bring Melvin Upton in was done to entice Justin back to San Diego.

If Padres are still deep in third place approaching the All-Star break, I believe they should trade Justin to replenish a farm system that is more dried up than the Southern California desert.

A veteran like Upton should bring in a nice prospect haul from any of the aspiring and hungry playoff teams come July 31st.

If and when Melvin Upton and Wil Myers come back, where does this leave the roster?  You have to expect Melvin Upton to take over in center field for Wil Myers.  He won’t be paid $46.35 million to ride the bench, that is just ludicrous.  This would move Myers to first and squeeze Yonder Alonso out of the starting roster.

With glaring needs at shortstop, and arguably the rest of the infield, Upton should be deal for a middle infielder and prospects.  This would allow Myers to slide over to a corner outfield position where he is more comfortable, and keep the Padres out of a financial bind.

Ken Rosenthal thinks, “the Padres will be fascinating to watch at the deadline.”

Well that’s great, but the fans are waiting for the Padres to be fascinating to watch in October.  Let’s hope with some more Preller dealing we can get to the promise land sooner rather than later.

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