1 player San Diego Padres should extend next, and 2 extensions they should avoid
The San Diego Padres should avoid an extension with Blake Snell
Blake Snell was one of the best pitchers in baseball during his time with Tampa Bay. He won the Cy Young Award in 2018 and was a very important piece on their 2020 pennant-winning team. the Padres acquired Snell after the 2020 season and he just hasn't been the same guy since.
Snell had a 4.20 ERA in 27 starts in the 2021 season while pitching just 128.2 innings. He averaged around 4.7 innings per start, which is unacceptable for a guy who's supposed to be a frontline starter.
Last season Snell was better, posting a 3.38 ERA in 24 starts but even then his walks were high (3.8 BB/9), and it just felt like you never knew which version of Snell you were going to get.
This season has been rough for the southpaw thus far, as he's posted a 6.92 ERA in three starts and just 13 innings of work. Snell has walked 10 and already given up three home runs in his three starts.
Like Hader, Snell is a free agent after this season. Given the production he's given the Padres and the downfall he's had since the 2018 season, I don't see why the Padres would extend Snell.
He hasn't thrown 130 innings or more since 2018. He hasn't made 30+ starts since that season either. He's done both of those things just once in his eight-year career.
When he's right, Snell can be really good. Last season he had a stretch of five starts in which he allowed just three runs in 28.2 innings pitched (0.94 ERA). He also had three starts in which he allowed five runs or more and couldn't get past the fourth inning. When he's off, he's very off.
If Snell has a good year, stays healthy, and wants to return, the Padres can sign him in free agency. They can even look to extend him after the season ends. Doing so now when Snell's tenure has been as rocky as it has been, would be a mistake.