The San Diego Padres are still solidifying their pitching staff, and emphasizing depth. With an eye towards spring training which commences in just over two weeks, the front office is staying busy.
On Monday, the club began the week by signing long time minor leaguer Matt Magill. At 27 years old, the right-hander has already pitched for nine seasons in the minors, which included two short stints in the majors.
Slowly making his way through the Los Angeles Dodgers’ minor league system after being drafted in the 31st round in 2008, Magill made his major league debut in 2013. Mostly though, this season was spent in AAA.
After spending 2014 and 2015 in the minors, Magill returned to the majors for another brief stint in 2016. This, however, consisted of just five appearances with the Cincinnati Reds.
As SB Nation first reported, Magill will now be a member of the Padres. The contract is unsurprisingly a minor league deal, and the 27-year-old will serve as depth, most likely at AAA El Paso.
As a whole, Magill’s career numbers are encouraging yet puzzling. On one hand, the right-hander has 755 career strikeouts in 752 and 2/3 minor league innings. He has also surrendered just 68 home runs during this same span.
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But on the other hand, Magill has struggled to keep his ERA down, as his career ERA sits at 4.20. He also has issues with control, especially during his time in the majors, as he has walked 408 hitters in 830 and 2/3 career innings, when his major and minor league careers are combined.
Over his career, Magill has discovered that he best fits in a relief role. From 2008 to 2015, the Simi Valley native started 151 games. Since then though, the hurler has made 76 relief appearances in AA, AAA, and the majors, and has made no starts.
While nothing has yet been finalized, fans can assume that Magill will continue to pitch out of the bullpen in San Diego’s system. He is a versatile option though, and could fill in playing any role for a Clayton Richard led pitching staff if catastrophe were to strike.
General manager A.J. Preller is following through with his promise to add pitching depth to the roster this offseason. While not the type of reliever many fans would like to see added, the Padres are doing exactly what they need to. And while bringing Magill in may seem insignificant, fans will have to wait to see how 2017 plays out to know for sure.