Drew Pomeranz has been one of the most consistent relievers for the Padres, and his injury status further justifies a trade is needed.
Signed to a four-year deal in the offseason, I don’t think anyone could have put into words how much Drew Pomeranz has meant to this Padres bullpen, but we are going to do our best. Pomeranz was nails for the Brewers bullpen in the second half of the 2019 season, and he, along with Emilio Pagan, were brought in to help close the gap between the starting pitcher and back-end of the bullpen.
The problem through approximately the midway point of the shortened season is that the Padres bullpen has looked terrible. The team has been decimated with key injuries in both Jose Castillo and Kirby Yates. The latter was exceptional for the Padres last season, collecting a league-leading 41 saves.
Pomeranz last made an appearance on Tuesday, and he was mysteriously absent from the team’s struggle to close out games in the Rangers series. And now we understand why, as news has come to light that the big lefty has landed on the 10-day IL with shoulder tightness. He was reportedly hoping to avoid an IL stint, but any injury relating to the shoulder has to be approached with the highest of cautions.
He has been used quite frequently in the early goings, and losing him for the year would be detrimental to the Padres postseason chances. On that subject, the team should approach the Pomeranz injury as a proactive measure to acquire bullpen help before the trade deadline.
We’ve discussed a couple of obvious choices in both Trevor Rosenthal and Brandon Workman as potential trade targets. But the return for both of them could be hefty. It’s a sellers market in this shortened season, so teams are going to have to overpay, for lack of a better phrase, to acquire the help desired.
Pomeranz is a key piece of his bullpen, but let’s play devil’s advocate here and assume the worst. If his shoulder tightness is a more concerning issue, it only enforces the need to acquire help at the deadline. Look for the Padres to make a move next week.