Blake Snell was one bright spot in what turned out to be a miserable season for the San Diego Padres. The southpaw not only was the team's best player, he wound up winning the NL Cy Young Award. He was as dominant as any Padres starting pitcher has ever been from late May through the end of the season. Even with the walks, it was truly a pleasure to watch him take the mound.
Snell's season couldn't have come at a better time for himself, as he put together a season to remember during his contract year. He now is on the free agent market with his value as high as it has ever been. With Snell likely to receive over $150 million at least, the chances of him remaining a Padre are virtually non-existent.
San Diego is in a bit of financial turmoil and has no easy way of getting out. While they certainly won't be bringing Snell back, they do have to address the rotation. As much as we'd love to see them sign guys like Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Jordan Montgomery, and even Eduardo Rodriguez, that just doesn't feel realistic. While they won't get frontline guys, the Padres can hope Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove bounce back. If they do, adding one or maybe two of these three starters would make the rotation somewhat formidable even without Snell.
1) Marcus Stroman
This might be a bit too rich for the Padres right now, but Marcus Stroman is only projected to make $44 million over two years according to MLB Trade Rumors. The Padres could easily look to potentially give Stroman an extra year to get the AAV down and then suddenly he could fit into the team's plans financially.
If they can somehow convince Stroman to come to San Diego, the Padres would be landing a very strong number three starter. When right, Stroman is easily a frontline guy that also just so happens to be very fun to watch.
When healthy, Stroman is a workhorse that loves to take the ball and go deep in games. He's excellent at keeping the ball on the ground, and with guys like Manny Machado and Ha-Seong Kim in the infield, that's a great thing.
Stroman was an All-Star for the Cubs last season, and has pitched at an All-Star level for much of his career when healthy. It's possible that he's just too expensive, but if not, San Diego should be all over this.