It's going to happen, right? I mean, it has to. The newspaper says it will.
In an article from the UT, the possibility of an imminent trade is discussed.
“We’re in a handful of productive discussions,” Padres general manager Josh Byrnes said Saturday morning. “I’m pretty optimistic that we’ll address these areas.
“By the time the Winter Meetings end, we will have done something. We’re lined up on a few trade ideas over the next couple weeks.”
Bill Center goes on to list 3 names who could be off the roster via trade which include Burch Smith, Robbie Erlin, and Eric Stults. As Center mentions, each one of these 3 will be competing for the 5th spot in the rotation with Johnson, Ross, Cashner, and Kennedy leading the pack.
Smith and Erlin are both very good candidates for a trade because they are still young and controllable for a few more years. Stults on the other hand is an interesting case. Since joining the Padres, he has a 3.62 ERA with a record of 19-13 over his 51 games pitched as a Padre. At 33, he is pitching as well as any of us could have hoped after being picked up off waivers in May 2012. The kind of attention he will get will be interesting considering the availability of Smith and Erlin.
Who will be dealt and for what is still an unanswerable question. The Padres are in need of a good lefty bat. But as Center says
Don’t expect them to add a left-handed bat with a 30-homer season in his resume. However, they could be adding a bat capable of 400 at-bats over the course of 2014.
For me, the fact that Byrnes is "pretty optimistic" is a good sign that deals could be happening sooner than later. The Padres pulled off the Josh Johnson signing when many thought that the Front Office wouldn't be going after him. The notion that Byrnes is out making calls and arranging deals is a good sign before the start of December.