Ranking 3 first basemen the Padres should prioritize in free agency

Jerry Trotta
HOUSTON, TEXAS - OCTOBER 11: Yuli Gurriel #10 of the Houston Astros celebrates his solo home run against the Seattle Mariners with Trey Mancini #26 during the fourth inning in game one of the American League Division Series at Minute Maid Park on October 11, 2022 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - OCTOBER 11: Yuli Gurriel #10 of the Houston Astros celebrates his solo home run against the Seattle Mariners with Trey Mancini #26 during the fourth inning in game one of the American League Division Series at Minute Maid Park on October 11, 2022 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
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Sep 22, 2022; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Houston Astros first baseman Trey Mancini (26) prior to his at bat in the second inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 22, 2022; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Houston Astros first baseman Trey Mancini (26) prior to his at bat in the second inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports /

2. Trey Mancini

Mancini made an inspiring comeback from colon cancer that sidelined him for the COVID-shortened 2020 season. He has the respect of the entire league, is a treasured clubhouse presence and his leadership would be a tremendous fit on a Padres team whose core comprises of young players just entering their primes.

In two seasons with Baltimore and Houston since beating cancer, Mancini hit .251/.326/418 with 39 home runs and 134 RBI. The 30-year-old’s power numbers plummeted after the Orioles — much to the chagrin of sluggers throughout MLB — expanded Oriole Park’s dimensions, but he’s still capable of hitting between 15-30 home runs and driving in 60-80 runs with a .respectable 340 OBP per season.

The Padres would likely make Mancini their everyday first baseman, but he has the versatility to play both corner outfield positions, allowing Bob Melvin to get creative with his lineup and defensive alignment late in games.

Mancini isn’t the feared slugger he was earlier in is career with Baltimore, but now two full seasons removed from his bout with cancer, Mancini is poised to rebound from a sluggish second half of 2022 and October with the Astros.

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