You are what your record says you are. So said Hall of Fame NFL Coach Bill Parcells, and it fits the San Diego Padres these days.
We are two weeks out from the baseball trading deadline, and depending on whom you talk to, they are either ‘buyers-or-sellers’ when the GMs make phone calls.
Yes, they believe they are still in the wild card pennant race, and yes, there are still 75-games or so left to play. But no, this will not be an easy trick to make their way into the ‘play-in’ wildcard game.
Yes, they have walk free agents in outfielder Justin Upton and pitcher Ian Kennedy and there have been no contract talks to retain them that we know of.
Upton has hit well at Petco, and might be looking at a payday beyond 16M per season. Kennedy has struggled badly, but it is doubtful he would sign now, for that is not the practice of agent Scott Boras. He puts pitchers on the open market and see where the bidding goes.
Rumor says Upton could be moved, maybe to the Mets for young pitching or a young outfielder, like Michael Conforto..
Kennedy is not as marketable right now because of that (4-9) record and that agent, but he could be a value mid-rotation rental guy, possibly to the Angels or Dodgers for a prospect..
it is hard to believe the rumors, but everyone has sources, and Buster Olney at ESPN is of the opinion the Padres are shopping the 75M contract of James Shields to the Cubs. But Chicago is loaded, led by shortstops Starlin Castro and Javy Baez.
And another GM has indicated the Yankees, with a pitching staff of arm issues, are interested in Craig Kimbrel with young 2nd baseman Rob Refsnyder as part of a deal coming this way..
Reliever Joaquin Benoit has value as a short term rental also.
But if GM-AJ Preller is to move these players, his credibility takes a double hit. He spent alot of currency, 11-young minor league prospects to build this roster. He’d be admitting he made a mistake. It would then lead to questions as to whether he knows what he is doing.
You don’t trade rosters and prospects like they are baseball cards.
It also sends a really bad message to the fans and the paying public, that a major rebuild is underway, and remember this, rebuilding without much of a farm system, which you dealt away last offseason..
Who replaces Upton in the batting order? Who is your closer if Kimbrel moves? Do you think there is another Shields ready for the rotation? I don’t see answers anywhere.
I’d stay the course, keep this group, see if you can vault a number of teams, and be a playoff team. And then go back into the market place next year, with Upton and Kennedy money and replace them, if as expected they leave.
There are six teams infront of the Padres right now in the wildcard race. They could still be a contender. Trading key guys now means you have no hope, not this year, and maybe not for a couple of more years.
You are what your record says you are. Don’t make it worse, by giving up on the team you put on the field, just four months ago.