The San Diego Padres have started to simmer down after their humungous signing of Xander Boagerts early in this free agency period, but that doesn't mean that AJ Preller has totally thrown his hands up and neglected to add help at positions of need. The outfield still remains a question mark, as does the rotation.
Names like Trent Grisham and Ha-Seong Kim have popped up in trade rumors lately, with the former's .184 batting average overruling his Gold Glove defense and making him an expendable player. If he gets dealt, perhaps for rotation help like Clarke Schmidt, the Padres must act quickly to replace him.
MLB Network's Harold Reynolds proposed that former Chicago White Sox outfielder AJ Pollock, a Padres killer who was an All-Star in Arizona before spending three seasons with the Dodgers, could be someone that can fill a hole on this young San Diego team.
While he may be one of the better outfielders that haven't been signed at this point, Pollock might not be ideal for the Padres. San Diego wants to build a sustainable winner, and Pollock might be nothing more than a one-year stopgap at this point. Is that was Preller is really looking for?
The San Diego Padres must avoid AJ Pollock.
It's been a very long time since Pollock was an All-Star with the Diamondbacks. While he did have some nice seasons offensively with the Dodgers, the combination of some concerning trends at the dish and less-than-spectacular defense make him less attractive.
Pollock has played more than 117 games in a season just once since 2015, making him as much of a clear and present injury risk as any free agent in the league. While he played in 138 games with the White Sox, he hit just .245 with a .681 OPS. He's regressing, and the Padres can't afford to let him work through these issues.
The Padres would be better off keeping Grisham than making a move for Pollock. While neither of them will fundamentally change the team's lineup, Grisham has as much (if not more) power than Pollock while being much younger and a much better defender.
The Padres should still look to make sure that they can build as talented a lineup 1-9 as possible, be it with or without Grisham. Pollock had some solid Dodgers numbers, but his best days are behind him, which should be considered by Preller.