Machado / Harper, Padres?

User avatar
Posts: 6773
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2016 3:47 pm
Location: NYC/ LA

Machado / Harper, Padres?

Postby T15D23 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:41 pm

The Padres are not ruling out a run at Harper or Machado at the right price
Ken Rosenthal and Dennis Lin


When it comes to Manny Machado and Bryce Harper, the Padres did not qualify as a mystery team until recently. Now, their interest in at least one of the two free agents is no secret.

The Padres have done background work on both Machado and Harper, according to major-league sources. They have checked in with their representatives, as first reported by FanCred’s Jon Heyman. And while they are more likely to spend big next offseason than they are this one, they are not ruling out a run at Machado or Harper at the right price, sources said.

Machado, who would address a glaring positional need, appears to have moved to the forefront. The Padres have expressed interest in arranging a meeting with the third baseman, possibly in Miami, sources said Saturday. Team officials would like to get some face time before becoming more involved with the free agent.

Other potential suitors — teams with higher revenues and better rosters than the Padres — surely are playing the same game, waiting to pounce if either or both players become available at reasonably favorable terms. For now, the Padres remain a “longshot” for a major strike, according to one source familiar with their thinking. Two other sources said they would be “shocked” if either Harper or Machado landed in San Diego.

The Padres already have one player earning $20 million annually, first baseman Eric Hosmer, and another whose salary will rise to that level next season, outfielder Wil Myers. Assuming Harper and Machado command salaries in the $30 million range annually, the Pads would be paying three players a combined $70 million starting in ’20 — a significant burden for a low-revenue club, one that is only a few years removed from undoing its last expensive buildup.

A trade of Myers almost certainly is inevitable, but unlikely to occur in the immediate future — the Padres have been trying to move him all offseason, most likely in a salary exchange, with no success. The team’s overall frustration with its inability to make trades despite a surplus of outfielders and abundance of prospects — nine in Baseball America’s Top 100, tying the Rays for the most in the majors — is one reason San Diego is taking a closer look at the free-agent market.

The Padres are intent on landing a third baseman, but at the moment, Greg Garcia and Ty France project as their Opening Day starters at shortstop and third, respectively. Top prospect Fernando Tatís figures to take over at short at some point in ’19. (Luis Urías can fill in, but his primary position is second base.) Machado would fit best at third; playing him at short and moving Tatís to third would be less likely.

Some Padres officials initially were concerned about Machado’s makeup, but the team grew more comfortable with the idea of adding him after soliciting the opinions of some of their own players and others. Third baseman Mike Moustakas, however, remains a more realistic free-agent target. The Padres are cool on the Phillies’ Maikel Franco, who would become available in trade if Machado went to Philadelphia, a source said.

Harper makes less positional sense than Machado, given the Padres’ abundance of outfielders, with or without Myers. But some with the club believe Harper will outperform whatever contract he receives. If the Padres signed him, they would need to resolve their logjam in the outfield and perhaps sign Moustakas to play third — both Harper and Moustakas are represented by agent Scott Boras, as is Hosmer.

The more likely course remains for the Padres to pursue more modest acquisitions, gather more information on their young talent in ’19, then plunge more seriously into free agency next offseason. That class could include two accomplished third basemen, Nolan Arenado and Anthony Rendon, along with starting pitchers Chris Sale, Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander, as well as others.

For the right price, however, the Padres may be willing to strike now.
0 x

- 11/25/03 GBMA

- 6/11/04 GBCJ

- 6/9/07 God Bless Leo

- 10/16/07 God Bless Huck

- 11/12/11 God Bless Mom

- 09/24/14 God Bless Dad


Return to “MLB”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests