Good morning, Padres fans! Hope you all enjoyed the off-day to catch up on life or maybe some other baseball shenanigans (in case you missed it, the Yankees and Rays apparently decided to express their feelings to one another last night, amongst other action). The Padres are starting a 5-game road trip with a 2-game set in Anaheim tonight, which will start 15 straight games the team will play. With that, let’s get into news and notes:
- AJ Cassavell ranks the Padres’ trade deadline acquisitions in order of their likely potential impact. No surprise, RHP Mike Clevinger takes the top spot, followed by C Austin Nola. But in the #3 spot, Cassavell lists RHP Austin Adams ahead of DH/1B Mitch Moreland and RHP Trevor Rosenthal. Cassavell states that the Padres believe Adams, who is currently rehabbing his knee from off-season knee surgery, will return in September, and provide a jolt to the bullpen. Adams throws a high-octane slider that sits around 89 mph, which opponents batted .133 against in 2019, with an absurd 48.4% whiff rate. Add in his remaining 4.5 years of control, and Adams may just become a mainstay in the Padres bullpen, provided he improves his control going forward.
- Madfriars.com also takes a look at the 9 players the Padres brought in. While the guys naturally focus in on the headliners, Clevinger and Nola, they also note another key component of the deals: with the exception of C Jason Castro, all the players acquired have several years of control remaining. This control will allow the team to either slot the new players in for several years, or can be attractive pieces as part of future potential deals.
- With the trades, the Padres sent out several of their Top 30 prospects. As a result, MLB Pipeline updated their Top 30 Padres prospects. Most only changed 1 or 2 spots, based on who moved. The biggest movers were INF Jorge Mateo, moving up from #15 in pre-trade deadline rankings to now #10, and RHP Javy Guerra, who jumped from #27 to #20. Those now joining (or rejoining) the Top 30 include: OF Jorge Ona, RHP Anderson Espinoza, LHP Omar Cruz; RHP Lake Bachar; LHP Jagger Haynes; RHP David Bednar; and RHP Pedro Avila. Expect even more movement at the end of the year, as several of those listed in the Top 30 will lose their rookie status, and thereby their prospect status.
- Given the number of potential buyers at the trade deadline, many fans were surprised at the package coming back to Cleveland in the Clevinger trade. When fans did not see one of the Padres Top 5 prospects coming back to the Tribe, many saw the trade as a loss. However, according Cleveland’s president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti, it was a trade borne out of familiarity between the two teams. As he told MLB.com’s Mandy Bell and other reporters, “We’ve spent a lot of time on their system….We have asked about all of these players in the past. Every one of them,” Antonetti said. “I would comfortably say, at this point, we’ve had hundreds of iterations of deals with the Padres.” Cleveland and San Diego have combined for five trades since July 2018.
- Morejon’s recent short stint on the IL was a product of MLB’s COVID-19 protocols. Fatigued and short of breath, MLB requires teams to place a player on the IL until testing is completed. Unfortunately, these are also symptoms of playing in elevation, as the Padres were during a four-game set in Coors Field. Since the Padres never received a positive test, Morejon was cleared to return Monday. “We think it was a one-time thing,” Padres manager Jayce Tingler said Monday night, “and just to be clear and probably cut away any gossip or rumors — we’ve got to be respectful of that — you come up here to the altitude here and it can add some fatigue, some shortness of breath.”
That’s it for today. As mentioned above, the Padres start a two-game series against the Angels Wednesday, with the first pitch set for 1840 Pacific. RHP Dinelson Lamet (2-1, 2.35 ERA) will face the Angels for the first time in his career. He’ll go up against RHP Julio Teheran (0-2, 9.17 ERA). Opposing hitters have a .319/.378/.625 batting line this year against the veteran Teheran. He faced the Padres twice last season while with Atlanta, allowing six earned runs in 13 innings. No word on who will make the start Thursday, but maybe it’ll be a newly acquired ray of Sunshine.