The San Diego Padres have claimed Luis Patino off of waivers from the Chicago White Sox. Of course fans know Patino, as he was once one of the best prospects in the farm system—ranked as high as #3 in 2020.
He was traded in the Blake Snell trade a few years ago but never lived up to expectations in Tampa Bay. The 24-year-old has only made 45 appearances in parts of four big league seasons, posting a 5.02 ERA and 1.50 WHIP.
The Rays traded Patino at the trade deadline this past season for cash. In Chicago, Patino only made one start and appeared in seven games.
This move shouldn’t be viewed as a bad one, as the expectations for Patino have significantly diminished and he’s not that top three prospect anymore. The Padres got a postseason run and a Cy Young season out of Snell so the trade was worth it and now we’ll see if they can get Patino back to being the guy he was when he was coming up through San Diego’s farm system.
If it doesn’t work out, then they’ll still have Adam Mazur, Jairo Iriarte, Robby Snelling and Drew Thope coming up at some point.
Another move the Padres have reportedly made is the hiring of Victor Rodriguez as their next hitting coach, according to Francys Romero. The 62-year-old spent 17 years in the Boston Red Sox minor league system as a coach before becoming the major league assistant hitting coach from 2013-2017. Then, he went to the Cleveland Guardians where he was on the major league staff through the end of the 2023 season.
Rodriguez therefore has some connections with Xander Bogaerts and Ruben Niebla.
We don’t truly know how much of an impact hitting coaches have on the results but if the offense struggles again, be prepared for fans to want Rodriguez fired. Ryan Flaherty got that same treatment before he left for the Chicago Cubs this offseason.
Oscar Bernard, Scott Coolbaugh and Morgan Burkhart are expected to also be on Mike Shildt’s staff in 2024.