2) The Padres need to acquire multiple starting pitchers
The Padres rotation is in bad shape heading into the 2024 season. At the top, the Friars have Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish. When healthy, both are great pitchers. Even after a down year I still believe Yu Darvish is a frontline starter. The problem is, Musgrove and Darvish both missed substantial time last season and especially in Darvish's case, aren't getting any younger.
Behind Musgrove and Darvish the picture is bleak. Blake Snell, Seth Lugo, Michael Wacha, and even Nick Martinez are all free agents. Snell would be the dream to bring back, of course, but with him likely winning the Cy Young award there's a good chance San Diego will be priced out.
The Padres could bring back one of Lugo or Wacha to start for them, but who knows how much money they're going to make coming off strong years in the Padres rotation.
The trade market could be where A.J. Preller finds an arm or even two. The Padres do have some good prospects they can part with, and there are several good arms like Tyler Glasnow, Dylan Cease, and Shane Bieber who could be available for the right price. Heck, maybe even Corbin Burnes will be in play.
Musgrove and Darvish will obviously play a massive role in the rotation. Having a guy like Pedro Avila open the year as the team's fifth starter wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. San Diego desperately needs to add at least two starters to help round out the staff. Anything less would be putting them in a bad spot.