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Quantum Baseball Physics: What happens when a Player To Be Named Later is named before later?

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The curious case of Trea Turner

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Somewhat lost in all of the weird things that have happened to the Padres over the past several months has been the reality altering aftermath of the 11-player trade with the Nationals and the Rays. As part of the trade, the Nationals got a Player To Be Named Later, who would be named from a provided list of players. Trea Turner is one of the players on that list and he plays for the Padres. In fact, Trea Turner reported to camp this week.

The three team trade is not considered complete until the player is named, but in the case of Trea Turner, he cannot be technically named until after he's completed a season with the Padres being the team's 2014 first rounder. Except that it's been leaked that the PTBNL is actually Trea Turner and I myself have named his name five times already in this blog post.

So now one of three amazing things has happened:

If the PTBNL could not possibly be named until next year (technically sometime in December) and yet Trea Turner is the player named, then the Nationals and Padres have broken time and space and it is now the 2016 season. I think this might be the most likely of any scenarios. This is crazy stuff we're dealing with. Later has now been defined as Now, which is a tesseract, which of course is something any Charles Wallace or Meg Murry off the street can explain will lead to some crazy-assed sh_t like centaurs.

...

Actually, I take back what I said. That's the least likely.

On the other end of the spectrum and actually an extremely likely scenario compared to the above, is that the Padres will not want to mess up the delicate balance of an 11-player 3-team trade any further and the Padres and the Nationals will wrap Trea Turner in blankets and cover his skin in preventative band-aids so as not to hurt him in time for December when the baseball particles will finally collide and the trade will be completed. In the meantime, the trade takes on something not unlike a particle wave form wherein it will be very difficult to discern which direction anything's traveling in or where it might be because every single time I even mention Trea Turner, his baseball future-present-past gets knocked sideways.

This is heavy heisenberg sh_t we dealing with.

Somewhere in the middle, is the not-as-likely-as-the-first, but more-likely-than-the-second possibility that Trea Turner must change the name on his birth certificate sometime between now and December. Effectively, if he changes his name then the "name" part of the PTBNL equation is fixed and he spares himself a year of living in a padded room with a centaur.

/baseball analysis