State of the Padres: Depth Chart

Most of these can probably be argued, but this is my perspective on where we stand. This post will kind of outline our future and identify surpluses we might think about when paring down the roster or, later, at the trade deadline comes along.  I'll try my best to focus on players who should be available to the big league team in 2010:


Let's get the easy one over with:


1. Adrian Gonzalez

2. Kyle Blanks

The thing that stands out here is not a quantity-based depth, but a quality-based depth - if Adrian is traded this year, we have a decent replacement in Blanks (decent in terms of: I would not view him as a lineup liability).


1. David Eckstein

2. Jerry Hairston Jr

3. Oscar Salazar

Some good veteran leadership on the infield, and I think that second base is probably a good place to have a veteran - the corners are where you want your improving/reliable power threats and shortstop requires more athleticism than most vets can provide, while aging/declining players can provide leadership and "lead-by-example" from any position on the field. Hairston is a name that will show up at almost every position - he is a very valuable veteran utility man(also let me point out that the Padres have, for the last several years, almost sought out brothers).


1. Chase Headley

2. Jerry Hairston Jr

3. Logan Forsythe / James Darnell

I'm happy to finally see Chase at the top of this list - perhaps now he can feel more comfort and relaxation, not to mention the ability to be at a position natural to him. Hairston again, and Forsythe round it out. Forsythe spent 2009 in A+ and AA (about 1/2 and 1/2). He's put up decent numbers through the lower minors. Although James Darnell (similar stats, one level lower) gets more attention and will probably end up a better player, Forsythe will probably reach the majors faster. Baring any unforeseen difficulties this season in AA, I can see Forsythe coming up to the majors, late in 2010, if the need presents itself. Darnell could have a similar career path and show up in 2011/2012. Third base will be a very interesting position in the coming years with Headley, Darnell, Forsythe, and Edinson Rincon. It's also worth noting that Baseball America projects Darnell to move over second base.


1. Everth Cabrera

2. Jerry Hairston Jr

3. Lance Zawadzki

Cabrera was amazing for his experience level/success in 2009. Jerry shows up again and prospect Lance Zawadzki, who spent 2009 in A+ and AA, could be a late-season if-the-need-presents-itself addition. Fangraphs calls Lance Z a "decent regular" who could put up "10-12 homers and 10-15 steals" when he reaches the majors.


1. Nick Hundley

2. Dusty Ryan

3. Mitch Canham

Nick Hundley is pretty solid, but I don't think the club will stand by and let Dusty Ryan fill in Hundley gets injured. Canham might be due a call up this year, at the very least it would be interesting to see if he can adjust. Canham put up a decent line from April through August 3 in AA last season: .290 with 6 home runs , but the season wore him down and he fell to an overall total of .263 with 6 home runs. I would be very interested in seeing him with San Diego in late 2010.


1. Scott Hairston

2. Kyle Blanks

3. Tony Gwynn Jr

4. Jerry Hairston Jr

5. Will Venable

6. Aaron Cunningham

7. Luis Durango

8. Chad Huffman

Most people like Will more than me - I don't think he's even in our top-4 outfield candidates. His combination of high strikeout/low walk percentage means he's probably not going to have much success going forward... He's kind of like our new-Kouzmanoff, standing in the way of more-deserving players (case and point, Cunningham). An alternative to the S.Hairston/Blanks/Gwynn Jr outfield could be a Headley/S.Hairston/Blanks outfield with Jerry Hairston at 3B - but this might be too innovative for Buddy to take a risk. Ideally, Cunningham would start 2010 as a starter for the Padres - he has nothing left to prove at AAA.

So, besides first base (Adrian), the outfield might be our greatest positional strength (this week) and I would expect to see some names here (such as both Hairstons and maybe Venable) being echoed in rumors come July. Another area that looks deep at the moment is second base - with two good veterans in Eckstein and Hairston Jr.


Coming soon... Pitching!

This FanPost was written by a member of the Gaslamp Ball community and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Gaslamp Ball managers or SB Nation.

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