Well, it was fun for a moment. Earlier today, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported a deal to bring Max Scherzer to the Padres was “close.”
Close, but no cigar.
Now, the Nationals ace is reportedly (Rosenthal agreeing with reporting by ESPN’s Jeff Passan as well as Jon Heyman) headed to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Along with Trea Turner.
That certainly took a turn for the worse.
Max Scherzer apparently being traded to Dodgers, not Padres
"“The Dodgers are finalizing a deal to acquire star right-hander Max Scherzer and star shortstop Trea Turner from the Washington Nationals for a massive prospect haul, sources tell ESPN. The blockbuster of blockbusters is going to happen.”"
The Dodgers will reportedly be giving up several top prospects, as you’d expect, including catcher Keibert Ruiz, Baseball America’s 16th-ranked prospect (per Heyman). RHP Josiah Gray would be part of the deal as well.
Heyman also reports Scherzer, who has 10-and-5 rights, has approved the deal.
While that’s a bit of a gut punch — not just losing out on the best pitcher available on the market but seeing him go to L.A. as well.
Padres can target Jose Berrios of Twins for trade
So where to the Padres go from here?
Earlier today they were said to be looking at Minnesota right-hander Jose Berrios. That’s nothing new. According to NBC Bay Area’s Jessica Kleinschmidt, they’ve been trying to work out a deal with him for a few days.
Berrios would be a decent fallback. He’s seen as one of the top starting pitchers on the market, but the Twins are asking exactly that kind of a price for him as well.
He has a 3.48 ERA this year with a shining 1.04 WHIP. For his career he has a 4.08 ERA and 1.23 WHIP.
He also has 126 strikeouts in 122 innings this year.
So, it’s not all sadness if Berrios, in fact, ends up the backup option.
There may even be one added bonus: Berrios is under team control for one more year, so he’d fit into the Padres plan to be every bit as competitive in 2022 as in 2021. He is being paid just $6.1 million this year.