Former Padres top prospects from Juan Soto trade (and ex-Dodger) at center of drama

This series has seen some intriguing storylines emerge.
Washington Nationals infielder CJ Abrams
Washington Nationals infielder CJ Abrams / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

Admit it, Pads fans, there are times when you wish that CJ Abrams and MacKenzie Gore were still part of the San Diego Padres organization. The two former top prospects were part of the blockbuster Juan Soto trade back in 2022 that brought the slugger to San Diego.

Abrams and Gore, along with James Wood, Robert Hassell III, Jarlin Susana, and Luke Voit, were all sent packing in favor of Soto and Josh Bell. The trade sent shockwaves throughout Major League Baseball and put the Friars in prime position to make it to the World Series. Unfortunately, San Diego fell to the Philadelphia Phillies in the NCLS that year and Soto has since been traded to the New York Yankees.

This week, the Padres welcomed Abrams and Gore back to San Diego. With the Nats in town for a three-game series — one that's become rather contentious — the Friar faithful have gotten at look at what could've been with Abrams manning shortstop for Washington and Gore toeing the rubber on Tuesday.

MacKenzie Gore & Keibert Ruiz were at the center of Padres-Nats benches clearing incident

Gore, and former Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Keibert Ruiz, were at the center of controversy on Tuesday night at Petco Park. Before Monday night's hero Jurickson Profar even swung the bat, Ruiz had words for the Padres outfielder. Ruiz even went as far to put his hands on Profar.

Manny Machado eventually entered the fray, and that caused the benches to clear. Once cooler heads prevailed and everyone returned to their respective places on the field, Gore decided to take things to the next level.

The Nats' starter hit Profar in his leg during the first pitch of the at-bat. Erroneously, the home plate umpire didn't eject Gore and instead sent manager Mike Shildt back to the clubhouse. Thankfully, Machado took matters into his own hands and smashed a two-run bomb over the wall in left field to put San Diego up 2-0.

Padres make former CJ Abrams look foolish after inexcusable baserunning gaffe

While the fireworks happened in the first inning, Abrams was made to look foolish during the third inning. The Padres caught Abrams napping on the base paths and recorded an inexcusable out in the most bizarre fashion.

Abrams laced a single into right field field in front of Padres' outfielder Bryce Johnson, who quickly got the ball back into the infield. But the Nats now had runners on first and second with only one out. Thankfully for the Padres, an error in judgment on Abrams' part helped San Diego record the second out of the inning.

Abrams, as most players do, circled first base after the hit and began to return to the bag. But Abrams turned his back on the ball and was picked off first base after Ha-Seong Kim threw behind him to first baseman Luis Arráez, who applied the tag.

The Padres were fortunate to get that extra out, as the Nationals went on quite the run that inning. Lane Thomas' triple and a home run from newly anointed Padres' villain Jesse Winker helped the Nats edge in front 4-2. But Profar's grand slam in the sixth inning put the Friars up for good and Robert Suarez slammed the door in the ninth.

And the Padres kept the last laugh with an 8-0 victory on Wednesday to complete the series sweep. Maybe they don't need to regret that trade after all.

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