San Diego Padres pitcher Blake Snell is pricing himself out on returning in 2024
Keeping Blake Snell and Josh Hader was a risky move by Preller, but in the overall big picture, it was a move he had to do to keep his team competitive. Now that things are slowly falling apart, their free agency will be a big topic over the winter and there's a good chance neither is back with the Friars when spring training begins in 2024.
Snell's numbers this season are no indication of how he has pitched. Yes, he became a consistent pitcher when the Padres signed Gary Sanchez as a free agent in late May and the two have formed a strong working connection. He is 9-8 with a 2.63 ERA in 24 starts and 171 strikeouts in 130 innings. His problem has been run support from his teammates and anyone paying attention knows that.
He is in the final year of a five-year, $50 million contract he signed with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2019 and there is no doubt that he's going to get a big pay raise, but where? At 30 years old, the left-hander could easily see his next deal double from his current one, and would Preller be willing to go say, five more years at $100 million? That's an awful lot of money for a pitcher who has a ton of innings already pitched in his career. However, he has been their best pitcher this season.