Time was ticking on July 30, 2021. A.J. Preller and the San Diego Padres hadn’t acquired any starting pitching but there was still some hope that they’d make some sort of move with about ten minutes to go before the deadline arrived. They’d make a move, but it was trading for outfielder Jake Marisnick—not a starting pitcher.
The move surprised many because outfield bench depth wasn’t considered an area that needed improvement, especially when the outfielder they acquired wasn’t known for having any power. The Marisnick trade may end up hurting the Padres more than it will help them because they gave up Anderson Espinoza to the Chicago Cubs. Espinoza hasn’t been able to stay healthy in the minor leagues but I believe he was worth not giving up on, especially when Marisnick was a free agent at the end of the season.
Technically, he isn’t a free agent because there’s a mutual option for 2022, but the Padres need more offense off the bench, not more defensive replacements whose main position is occupied by a gold glover.
As for Marisnick’s half season in San Diego, it was uneventful, as expected. Marisnick could’ve made an impact late in games a defensive replacement but he isn’t an offense-first type of player, and it turned out the Padres needed more offensive production after the trade deadline.
The former Astro finished with a -0.2 WAR in his 34 games and 54 plate appearances with the Friars, hitting .188/.264/.208 with zero home runs and 22 strikeouts (which is a 40.7% strikeout rate). There were times when he went more than a week without playing (such as August 31-September 11), which made it even more confusing at times about why Preller even made the move to begin with. Here’s one of his just two runs batted in with the Padres:
Marisnick is probably going to be one of those Padres that fans forget even played for the team and I wouldn’t expect him to be back in 2022.