MLB insider predicts Padres will be a disappointment in 2022 and will trade Yu Darvish and Blake Snell by the deadline
It’s been a disappointing spring for the San Diego Padres, who only made a few notable transactions when the lockout lifted in early March.
And if MLB insider Jim Bowden’s prediction is correct, the disappointment will continue into the regular season, so much so that they’ll end up trading away some big names and punting the season.
On Monday, Bowden published his list of 22 predictions for the 2022 MLB season (subscription required). Oddly, the Padres were mentioned more than once, but more on that in a moment.
Down at No. 8 on the list was this foreboding forecast:
"“The Padres are a disappointment for the second consecutive season and therefore deal both Yu Darvish and Blake Snell at the trade deadline to get younger, cheaper and build for 2023 and beyond.”"
What a way to kick off Opening Day week.
There are plenty of outrageous predictions on Bowden’s list – Juan Soto to the Yankees at the deadline, for example – but this isn’t one of them. It’s a bummer, but it’s not exactly out of the realm of possibility.
While the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Freddie Freeman, the Padres failed to trade Eric Hosmer and/or Wil Myers, and decided that since they couldn’t free up the ledger space, they’d reset the luxury tax threshold, instead. The bloated payroll coupled with Fernando Tatis Jr.’s injury and several question marks on the roster, such as Mike Clevinger, do not paint an encouraging picture of the season ahead.
But somehow, despite Prediction No. 8, Bowden still thinks the Padres can be a postseason contender, which seems like a glaring oxymoron. Down at No. 20, Bowden mentions the Padres again:
"“The NL playoff teams will include the Braves, Brewers and Dodgers, while the Cardinals, Phillies and Padres all secure wild-card spots. Mets fans are left disappointed once again, especially after the team ends up with a payroll over $300 million and becomes the first team to pay the ‘Steve Cohen Tax.”"
It feels next to impossible that the Padres could trade Darvish and/or Snell and clinch a wild-card berth, so essentially, Bowden is splitting the difference and covering his bases. He’ll either be right about them being disappointments who sell at the deadline or right about them contending.