Dylan Cease trade cements AJ Preller as greatest troll GM in MLB history

Landing Dylan Cease reminded everyone that AJ Preller always has something cooking and is unafraid to take chances.
2024 San Diego Padres Spring Training
2024 San Diego Padres Spring Training / Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/GettyImages
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When the San Diego Padres' offseason turned towards being a teardown of the Padres roster, we openly wondering if general manager AJ Preller was the right guy for the job anymore. Preller excels when he is building towards an end goal and has the flexibility to make a variety of moves. With a restrictive payroll and the need to reset, it was fair to wonder if Preller's strengths didn't match up with where the Padres were as an organization.

However, when he went out and landed Dylan Cease late Wednesday, it was a reminder that there is no changing Preller and he will always find a way to create some action no matter when.

No one is safe and no stone is left unturned as long as AJ Preller is around San Diego Padres

Preller has a well-earned reputation as one of the league's most prolific dealmakers, right up there with Seattle's Jerry DiPoto. From the early days of the Padres ascension to now, Preller seems to always have trades in mind, and has the will and aggressiveness to turn those plans into actions. What is hilarious about Preller, though, is that he also cares not about the timing of a move.

The deal to land Cease was finalized as the Padres were packing up and getting ready to make the long trip to Korea for their season-opening series. Preller was cutting things so close here that Cease is going to have to fly to Korea separately from the rest of the team and meet up with them. It is hard not to draw the parallels with Preller's famous trade for Craig Kimbrel that went down just hours before Opening Day, with a helping hand from another notorious (for a lot of reasons) wheeler and dealer in former Braves GM John Coppolella.

There is just no caging AJ Preller. Whenever one thinks "okay, he should be slowing down now", he finds a way to shake things up no matter when. If he could get some extra international bonus pool money or a bullpen upgrade for his grandmother, he would trade her on her birthday and help her blow out the candles on her cake while driving her to the airport. He is the league's biggest troll, defying convention and, perhaps in this case, logic in his pursuit of greatness. The Padres may not end up being that much better after the Cease trade, but no one can say that the Padres are not interesting with Preller around.

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