With the return of Chase Headley (for the time being) via another trade with the Yankees, it seemed like a good time for the twentieth installment of my 29-part series in which I construct rosters consisting of guys who played for both the Padres and the team du jour. I use Baseball Reference's Multi-team Finder to bring up the talent pool I have to choose from, then whittle it down to a logical 25. In this case there have been 121 players, including 64 pitchers, so there was a lot of chaff to separate from the wheat. As always, I went by each player’s overall career and peak, not how they performed when they were with either or both teams.
More Combined Teams: Padres/Red Sox Padres/Rays Padres/Mariners Padres/Rangers Padres/Braves Padres/A's Padres/Mets Padres/Rockies Padres/White Sox Padres/Twins Padres/Royals Padres/Giants Padres/Indians Padres/Diamondbacks Padres/ Marlins Padres/ Brewers Padres/ Reds Padres/ Cubs Padres/ Tigers
C — Don Slaught - Bats R, 104 OPS+, 19.4 bWAR/ 16 seasons
Never a star, Slaught was quietly solid for several years, most notably with the Pirates in the early ‘90s. He ended his career with 20 games for the 1997 Padres, during which he went 0-20, a franchise record for most at-bats by someone who never recorded a hit with the team.
1B — Jack Clark - R, 137, 52.8/ 18
Notable best for being a jerk to nearly everyone whose path he crossed, Jack Clark was far and away the top first baseman available, well ahead of another Clark, former San Diego State basketball player Tony Clark.
2B — Yangervis Solarte - S, 105, 7.1/ 4
Four years isn’t that long, but Solarte has done decently for himself in that time. And hey, he beats the alternatives.
SS — Tony Fernandez - S, 101, 45.1/ 17
Just the other day I wrote about players with multiple stints with the Padres. Along those lines, Tony Fernandez played for the Blue Jays on four separated occurrences (1983-’90, 1993, 1998-’99, and 2001).
3B — Graig Nettles - L, 110, 68.0/ 22
It’s absurd that not only is Graig Nettles not in the Hall of Fame, but that he never received much support at all, maxing out at 8.3% in his first year of eligibility, and his name never pops up on the ballot for whatever they’re calling the veterans’ committee now.
LF — Gary Sheffield - R, 140, 60.3/ 22
Better known for playing right field, Sheff played about three seasons worth of games in left field — more time than he spent at third base — so he moves across the outfield to accommodate Dave Winfield.
CF — Rickey Henderson - R, 127, 110.8/ 25
Similarly, Rickey spent about three seasons worth of games in center field rather than his usual spot of left, and slides over here in order to get both Sheffield and Winfield in the lineup.
RF — Dave Winfield - R, 130, 63.8/ 22
That’s quite the lineup. Not always do these feature a pair of Hall of Famers and a couple more who played near or at that level. Spoiler alert: The pitching staff is the same way.
C/CIF/COF — Jim Leyritz - Bats R, 106 OPS+, 8.0 bWAR/ 11 seasons
IF — D’Angelo Jimenez - S, 94, 8.1/ 8
IF — Mark Bellhorn - S, 92, 8.0/ 10
OF — Oscar Gamble - L, 127, 23.0/ 17
OF — Ruppert Jones - L, 106, 22.5/ 12
It was tough leaving off Headley (S, 107, 26.8/ 11), but there was no spot on the bench for someone who just plays third base and, to a much lesser extent, left field and first base. Leyritz, Jimenez, and Bellhorn all provide versatility; Gamble would serve as the go-to pinch hitter and fill in at the outfield corners, and two-time All-Star Jones can cover all three spots, but spent most of his time in center.
Gaylord Perry - Throws R, 117 ERA+, 91.0 bWAR/ 22 seasons
Kevin Brown - R, 127, 68.3/ 19
David Wells - L, 108, 53.6/ 21
Bob Tewksbury - R, 104, 21.2/ 13
John Montefusco - R, 103, 20.0/ 13
The first three were absolute no-doubters, while Tewksbury and Montefusco were the best of the next tier, eking out another full rotation’s worth of solid starters.
Goose Gossage - Throws R, 126 ERA+, 42.0 bWAR/ 22 seasons
Matt Thornton - L, 129, 14.0/ 13
Jesse Orosco - L, 126, 23.9/ 24
Paul Quantrill - R, 118, 18.1/ 14
Lance McCullers - R, 116, 5.5/ 7
Antonio Osuna - R, 112, 6.3/ 11
Chad Qualls - R, 109, 6.5/ 14
Gossage would of course hold down the closer job, and he’d almost certainly put up much better numbers if he only had to pitch one inning at a time rather than the two or more that he always likes to brag about. Thornton and Orosco have each excelled as both lefty specialists and in lengthier spots, and the presence of the other would keep them both fresh. The fathers of Astros starter Lance McCullers, Jr. and Padres prospect Cal Quantrill were both sneaky-good during their unheralded careers, as were Osuna and the still-ticking Qualls.
C — Jerry Moses, John Flaherty, Bob Geren, Wil Nieves, Chris Stewart, Brian Dorsett
1B — Tony Clark
IF — Horace Clarke, Alex Arias, Jerry Royster, Juan Bonilla, Cody Ransom, Alberto Gonzalez, Chris Nelson, Tucker Ashford, Barry Evans, Fernando Gonzalez, Edwin Rodriguez
3B — Chase Headley, Mike Pagliarulo, Morgan Ensberg
OF — Matty Alou, Rondell White, Terrence Long, Bobby Brown, Ruben Rivera, Jerry Mumphrey, Bubba Trammell, Stan Jefferson, Darren Bragg, Fred “Chicken” Stanley, Oscar Azocar, Jay Johnstone, Freddy Guzman, Joe Lefebvre, Gene Locklear,
OF/1B — Dave Kingman, Curt Blefary, Xavier Nady, John Vander Wal, Mike Aldrete
OF/2B — Jose Pirela, Jerry Hairston
SP — Pat Dobson, Ed Whitson, Joe Niekro, Ian Kennedy, Chan Ho Park, Sterling Hitchcock, Jim Deshaies, Tim Lollar, Dennis Rasmussen, Andy Hawkins, Wally Whitehurst, Brett Tomko, Ricky Bones, Dustin Moseley, Darrell May, Wade LeBlanc, Jaret Wright, Ross Ohlendorf, Walt Terrell, Dave Eiland, Dave LaPoint, Jimmy Jones, Don Schulze
RP — Tommy Layne, Dan Miceli, Shawn Kelley, Ron Villone, Alan Embree, Chris Hammond, Kirby Yates, Buddy Carlyle, Greg Harris, Brian Boehringer, Royce Ring, Jay Witasick, Tim Stoddard, Chad Gaudin, Carlos Almanzar, Brett Jodie, Sean Henn, Mike Armstrong, Todd Erdos, Tim Redding, Jim Bruske, Scott Patterson, Pat Clement, Rick Sawyer, Mike Griffin, Dave Wehrmeister, Jim Brower, Randy Keisler