San Diego Padres may try to deal for Shohei Ohtani at the 2022 MLB trade deadline
"“The Padres’ A.J. Preller is among the general managers who typically explore pursuits of every big name, so perhaps it’s no surprise that, according to sources, he has checked in on the Angels’ Shohei Ohtani and the Athletics’ Frankie Montas.” -Ken Rosenthal, via The Athletic"
Ohtani would be a huge trade for the Padres. Though they aren’t in dire need of new pitchers, their starting rotation could be in flux (with a potential trade of Blake Snell to free up the payroll) and having Ohtani would provide some stability.
Rookie MacKenzie Gore has been unreliable the past couple of months and is currently on the injured list with elbow inflammation. Sean Manaea has also been unreliable.
Oakland Athletics pitcher Frankie Montas is also in consideration, per Rosenthal, but nobody could help the Padres on the mound as much as Ohtani could.
That’s because Ohtani can also help the lineup as well. This season, he’s hitting .257/.352/.492 for an OPS of .844. He also hits with more power than anyone currently playing in San Diego. Ohtani has an isolated power of .234. Manny Machado leads San Diego in power this season, and he currently has an isolated power of .207.
Ohtani would also be under club control under 2024, which would help strengthen the team’s current championship window.
Joe Musgrove and Mike Clevinger will both be eligible for free agency in 2023, so their futures in San Diego are uncertain. That leaves just Yu Darvish as a reliable pitcher under club control until 2024, which would be unsustainable if he ends up without Musgrove or Clevinger.
This season, Ohtani has produced an ERA of 2.80, batting average against of .202 and WHIP of 1.00. He’s comparable to Musgrove, who has produced an ERA of 2.63, BAA of .207 and WHIP of 0.99.
Ohtani has an extensive list of awards, including 2021 MVP and Silver Slugger awards.