The San Diego Padres have been rumored to move on from the top free agent starting pitchers for a while, and now we know why.
On Monday the Washington Nationals re-signed Strasburg to a record deal worth $245 million over seven years.
When the offseason started I had thought/hoped the San Diego Padres could bring the Southern California native home on a six-year deal for around $180 million, which is what he was predicted to get by MLB Trade Rumors.
But as the offseason got going it became apparent pretty quickly that he was going to blow by that number.
Still, I thought he would top out at around $200 million and the Nationals went well beyond that figure.
However, the Nationals are deferring over $80 million of that contract.
The San Diego Padres were never going to be able to compete with that contract, and honestly, I don’t know if any other team outside of the Nationals would have either.
It feels like the Nationals outbid themselves with Strasburg in order to bring back their former first overall draft pick and World Series hero … and I really can’t blame them for that.
With Strasburg off the board, Gerrit Cole likely won’t be far behind and will shatter the record contract that Strasburg just received.
There really aren’t any other free agent starting pitchers that make sense for the Padres and the top of the rotation pitcher they are looking for.
That is why if the Padres are going to find that pitcher this offseason, it’s going to have to be through a trade.