It’s no secret that the San Diego Padres are interested in first baseman Eric Hosmer. They have been involved with the former All-Star all offseason and at one point seemed like the favorites to land him.
Hosmer would mark a change of pace for the Padres as they look for a leader of their rebuild. With San Diego still a few years away from contention, their plan would be to sign Hosmer now so he can be the focal point of their offense when their young talent is major league read.
Those plans hit a snag following a new report from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale. Nightengale reported that the Kansas City Royals offered Hosmer a contract for seven years/$147 million compared to the Padres offer of seven years/$140 million.
Padres’ fans got even more bad news when Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that San Diego’s offer to Hosmer was even less than $140 million.
At this stage, it appears very unlikely that Hosmer would choose San Diego. Why take less money to go to a city you’ve never played for? He could just return to Kansas City and keep building his legacy.
However, it appears that Hosmer’s decision won’t be that simple.
Speaking to Ben Higgins Mighty 1090 on San Diego radio, Nightengale seemed to think that Hosmer wants to play for San Diego.
Starting at the 3:17 mark, Nightengale discusses how much Hosmer loves San Diego. He goes on to say:
"I know he’s very interested in San Diego. He’s been out there twice, he’s told friends how much he liked it there and how much he would like to play there. I think now it’s going to be a waiting game and how high someone will go."
Per Nightengale, Hosmer is a fan of the city of San Diego and would love to play there. For now it’ll just come down to money. Nightengale pointed out that since this is Hosmer’s last “big” contract, he’ll be seeking the most money possible. However perhaps the Padres could sway him based on his interest in playing in San Diego.
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Of course, we must take this report with a grain of salt. He’s been outspoken on his love for Kansas City. If they are offering much more money it’d be hard to see him leave. But clearly San Diego is intriguing to Hosmer and it appears as if the interest is mutual.
Hosmer has been in the MLB for the past seven seasons, hitting .284 with 127 home runs, 566 RBIs and 60 stolen bases over 1,048 games. He’s a one-time All-Star and Silver Slugger as well as a four-time Gold Glove winner and a member of the 2015 World Series champions.
Hosmer would give the Padres a player unlike many other in franchise history. He would be a true difference maker and bring not only a huge bat but a veteran presence to this young San Diego team.
But Hosmer would also cost the Padres their biggest contract in franchise history. While they want to contend in short order, they need to make sure they’re willing to spend that money.
Overall, the Eric Hosmer saga is far from over. We won’t know where he is signing anytime soon. What we do know is that Hosmer apparently loves San Diego and would love to play there.
Clearly there is a mutual interest and if the money is there, there’s a good chance that the former All-Star first baseman finds his way to the West Coast in 2018 and beyond.