“Padres–Rock Star GM”
It’s easy to assign nicknames to the people making the decision.
Padres GM-AJ Preller was tabbed the “Rock Star GM” by the slugger he had acquired Matt Kemp, after the series of trades he made his first off season in taking over.
They didn’t workout, Kemp, Justin Upton, Melvin Upton, James Shields. It cost the team a year of rebuild. It cost them a ton of money they had to pay out to get clubs to take the bad acquisitions off their hands.
And now the media wants to label Preller again with that title, after all the middle of the night trades, that started at last year’s trading deadline and continued thru to this weeks wild spending spree.
The Padres took on 121M in salaries in the trades for Blake Snell..Yu Darvish and the signing of Japanese phenom Ha-seong Kim.
The Padres decision maker has never been shy about being bold. That’s why the decision to deal off a ton of young prospects, for proven talent, has put the franchise into a Pennant Contending mode.
But the accolades for what is happening have to go to the guys who are ‘boots on the ground’, the scouts and the evaluators who looked at, and signed the wide variety of draft picks and foreign free agents that rebuilt the farm system.
It is odd though, if you look at the Padres depth chart, there’s not one of those draft picks or international players that was developed by Prellar.
Think about that.
Fernando Tatis was not ours. He came from the White Sox.
Chris Paddack is not a San Diego product. He came via trade.
The big bats took San Diego money as free agents, Machado-Hosmer.
Wil Myers came in a deal as did Tommy Pham.
Trent Grisham-Jake Cronenworth-the catchers were somewhere else.
The entire starting rotation, with the exception of Dinelson Lamet came here in transactions.
Virtually the entire bullpen came as acquisitions outside of Troy Wingenter.
For all they invested heading to his 6th year, there’s not much that has arrived at Petco Park.
Credit given to the scouting staff who found and paid for prospects to be used as bargaining chips.
Now there is a wave of “our players” waiting at the door step, and you assume names like Gore-Weathers-Morejon will be ready soon to take the next step up.
The GM has amazing work ethic. He has enormous contacts he trusts in the business. He has brass to do what he believes in, though it’s not always right.
He has spent enormous amounts of money to get players; wasted alot of money with mistakes; had to spend a bunch of money to get rid of guys.
His history is research, relationships and making phone calls to get deals done for players he believes in
Having a nice season in a 60-game schedule was great, but the team was running on fumes when it got to the finish line, and their pitching staff had broken down.
Some critics say if this were a normal 162-game summer, the Padres would not have made the playoffs.
Now we find out what Prellar’s latest creation can be. They look good. They look like they will play into October again this year. They look equal to the team they have been chasing who won the World Series a year ago. They appear ready to play with a team record 168M-payroll.
But let’s not call him a ‘Rock Star’ yet. ‘Wheeler-Dealer’ for sure.
Let’s see if 2021 takes the Padres into another galaxy, then you can crown him with whatever nickname you want.