1-Man’s Opinion on Sports-Monday. “PADRES GREAT SPORTS WEEKEND”

Posted by on May 6th, 2024  •  0 Comments  • 

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AJ Preller did it again, because he never stops doing it.

I wonder if he ever sleeps.  He makes deals at 2:30 in the morning.  He sends emails out at midnite.  He makes trades right before opening day and in the opening week of the season.  He deals at the deadline.

He’s so bold.

And he did it again, and maybe this turns out to be the best deal of his 9-year career, the Miami Marlins (4-for-1) trade that brought spray hitter Luis Arraez to the Friars.

There are so many discussion points to this Friday night deal.

Think Arraez, and think big time spray hitter with a little bit of power.  What he has done in his five years with the Twins and Miami as a pure hitter has brought comparisons to the great hitters we have seen.

Maybe Tony Gwynn.  Possibly Rod Carew.  How about Tony Oliva.  Maybe Wade Boggs.

The stat sheet, the back of the baseball card does not lie.  A career (.334) hitter.  The guy who has won 2-batting crowns in his career,including last summer’s  (.354) season in Miami. The first half of the season, he was over (.400)

A (.347) home batting average in Miami but a (.313) career road ledger.  He’s hit (.339) vs righthanders and (.278) vs lefthanders.

This is a complete guy in the batter’s box.  He had a 4-hit game his first game with the Friars.  He had 5-hit games with the Marlins and Twins.

So Preller, seeing a ho-hum (.500) team to start the season with no help from the farm system coming, starts dialing and reopens trade talks he had held with the Marlins in the winter.

End result, four top farm system players, led by Dylan Head and Jakob Marsee, become part of the 4-for-1 transaction.

What the Padres also got was financial relief, as Miami picked up (5.9M) of the money owed Arraez this year on his (10.1M) contract.  The Padres will pay only (593,000) of this year’s deal.  Quite a bargain if he hits (.334) this season.  Now next year the Friars will be on the hook for the (10.6M) final season before free agency.

The deal also keeps the Padres below the (237M) luxury tax threshold, for if they had gone over it a 4th year in a row, they would be paying 100% tax on every deal in the future.  And next year, they will be clear of the 13M-final year they are paying the retired Eric Hosmer.

So Preller, though clearing away more minor league talent, got a bat and still has some 12M-breathing room budget space still to make another deal, for his payroll is (166M) right now.

Granted in the two deals Preller has made since opening day, he has moved 7-top prospects plus P-Steve Wilson to get Dylan Cease and now Arraez.  And he still maintained the group of young pitchers he has starting at AA and lower in the farm system.

From the Marlins perspective, a disgraceful start, a (9-25) record and then hours after Miami moved their big bat, they got pounded (20-4) by the homeless Oakland A’s.  And their GM-Peter Bendix indicated more trades are likely of what is becoming a barren roster.  The Marlins are a mess.

The Friars made a statement with this trade.  “Dodgers-we are coming”.

Lots of baseball to be played.  Better team now than a week ago.  And still budget space and phone calls to be made by the relentless GM.

Preller, never ever content, just doing what he does, when he doesn’t sleep, which he doesn’t do much.

He’s done everything at all hours of the day, except making a trade on Christmas Day.  Knowing him, that could still happen too.



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