3 Los Angeles Dodgers free agents who could play for the San Diego Padres in 2024

Free agency doesn't have to be a one-sided affair. Could the Padres steal from the Dodgers this winter?

Oct 9, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Joe Kelly (17) throws
Oct 9, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Joe Kelly (17) throws / Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports
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3. The San Diego Padres could sign Lance Lynn for their starting rotation

Lance Lynn didn't have a great 2023 season, to say the least. His 5.73 ERA in 32 combined outings between the Chicago White Sox and L.A. Dodgers was the second-worst in MLB among qualified starters.

Though Lynn improved marginally upon his arrival in Los Angeles (4.36 ERA in 11 starts, roughly league average), his results still left much to be desired. Believe it or not, his 6.16 FIP with the Dodgers suggested he actually got lucky while he was there. Not ideal at all.

So why would the San Diego Padres be interested in Lynn? For starters, he would be a cheap alternative for a rotation that's expected to lose major contributors including Blake Snell, Seth Lugo and Michael Wacha. Depth is critical over the course of a 162-game season, and Lynn would be that, if nothing else.

Secondly, Lynn's career ERA is 3.74. That means he was pitching way worse in 2023 than his typical level of production indicates. Despite the high FIP and WHIP, he still managed to strike out over 10 batters per nine innings with the White Sox before being traded. And in 2022, he posted a 3.99 ERA over a full season in Chicago.

He isn't too far removed from success, and the Friars might be smart to take a flier on Lynn, who knows he needs a bounce-back season.

Plus, who doesn't like sticking it to the Dodgers? They couldn't fix him, as they do with so many other players who pass through. Maybe this time, the Padres have the secret to unlocking Lynn's potential.

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