It is widely known the San Diego Padres need outfield help but as A.J. Preller has noted, they have a budget so let’s not get our hopes up for Cody Bellinger or even Jorge Soler. Who would’ve been a good fit? Aaron Hicks, who signed with the Los Angeles Angels today on a one-year deal.
I thought it was definitely going to happen.
Aaron Hicks feels like a Padre pic.twitter.com/bAI1DmJ2uy— Talking Friars (@TalkingFriars) January 8, 2024
The Padres better have been interested because they’re in a position where they need to take advantage of unique circumstances like this one where a player wouldn’t cost $10+ million because he’s already getting paid by another team. Hicks is getting $19 million from the New York Yankees so the Angels are getting him for the league minimum.
Hicks would’ve been a switch-hitting bat that would’ve slotted in at center or left field immediately because the Padres don’t have an outfield right now (no offense Cal Mitchell and Jose Azocar). If it’s necessary, Azocar could be the starting center fielder but he has a career 81 OPS+ and is a right-handed hitter so I think it’s safe to say Preller wants another option there (perhaps it’s Jakob Marsee).
Now what for the Friars? A trade feels probable so we’re just waiting for that but for now, the realistic free agents out there that fit the Padres include Eddie Rosario and David Peralta (left-handed veteran bats), Jesse Winker (maybe could get him on a minor league deal), Jurickson Profar (feels like a lock), Michael A. Taylor (have been linked to him this winter), Kevin Pillar, Kyle Lewis and maybe Tommy Pham (but probably not).
What do you want the Padres outfield to look like come Opening Day?