The overhaul of the Padres outfielder, the huge acquisition of three starters, is an upgrade, but also likely a true message, they don’t believe he can play in the garden any longer.
A year ago this week Quentin said it was the healthiest his knees ever felt, and then promptly was limited in games, and then went down again, with a deep knee bruise. The season became a total washout.
He has returned to Peoria, echoing the same sentiments, feeling good, hoping to stay healthy, but there is a new development, he will attempt to become a part time first baseman.
Quentin won’t have to cover lots of ground but will have to learn a new role. It might allow the team to keep his bat, but it might allow them to showcase him to an American League team, where his role as a DH might better allow him to compete.
The veteran knows the writing is on the wall; no place to play in San Diego, no DH in the National League, and the only hope is to waive a no trade clause to head to the other league.
The Padres might have to eat a large chunk of the contract, might not get much in return, but will then have a roster spot. Or maybe he can handle the role, stay healthy, hit some home runs with a better lineup, and be a part-time force off the bench.
It’s easy to criticize him for all the failings since coming home in the Sox deal, but maybe it is unfair. He got hurt wearing your colors.
Heart is willing, body hasn’t. Maybe Quentin deserves this one final chance. Maybe the Padres owe him that; maybe he owes them production