MLB insider pitches Padres-Mason Miller trade that would be extremely painful

How 'bout no?!
Oakland Athletics pitcher Mason Miller
Oakland Athletics pitcher Mason Miller / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

Though the Oakland Athletics were seen as the laughing stock of Major League Baseball this offseason, the reality is that the A's are holding their own in the AL West this season. No, the A's aren't ticketed for a playoff run in 2024, but they're off to a better start than both the Los Angeles Angels and Houston Astros.

When the July trade deadline rolls around, the A's will inevitably be sellers once again. With team owner John Fisher readying to leave the Bay Area for a three-year layover in Sacramento before heading to Las Vegas, the A's will be looking to bolster their farm system, not compete for the postseason.

That means a successful young reliever could be on the move this summer. For those unaware, Mason Miller has been dealing for the A's thus far. The hard-throwing A's closer has a sparkling sub-2.00 ERA and is striking out over 50% of the batters he faces. While the San Diego Padres would love to have his arm in the bullpen, the asking price is likely to be through the roof.

MLB insider pitches Padres-Mason Miller trade that would be extremely painful

In fact, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal gave his opinion on the matter. In Rosenthal's evaluation for The Athletic (subscription required), he called the asking price steep. Pads fans would probably call it ludicrous.

Rosenthal maintains that if the Padres are looking to acquire Miller, it's going to cost them rookie outfielder Jackson Merrill. And with that, the Friar faithful collectively put that pipe dream in the rear view mirror.

While Padres President of Baseball Operations AJ Preller has proven over the years that he's more than willing to entertain the idea of trading for top-level talent, Merrill would seem to be one of those players that he has intentions of parting with. That's especially true considering how much of the Padres' farm system Preller just surrendered in order to add both Dylan Cease and Luis Arráez.

No GM in their right mind would give up a player like Merrill in exchange for Miller. The A's reliever could definitely become a hot commodity, and Rosenthal is correct in his assumption that Oakland would be looking for a huge return, but dealing Merrill would be extremely painful and something the Friars won't do.

With that in mind, Pads fans, it's time to hitch your wagon to Robert Suarez for the remainder of the season. The San Diego reliever certainly isn't a bad consolation prize. Miller may be averaging 100.8 mph on his fastball, but Suarez's heater is in the 98th percentile, according to Baseball Savant. The Padres don't necessarily need another closer, but perhaps beefing up the relief corps with some supplemental moves should be on Preller's to-do list.

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