Before the season even started the San Diego Padres were decimated by the injury bug. We aren’t talking someone being injured for a couple weeks or even just a couple months. There was a plethora of long-term injuries plaguing the Padres. Injuries to the likes of Mike Clevinger (13 Months), Michel Baez (13 Months), Jacob Nix (14 Months), Nick Burdi (12 Months), Trey Wingenter (10 Months), Jose Castillo (12 Months) and lastly after the amnesty period, the Padres signed Justin Verlander (10 Months) to a relatively team friendly 3-year $31,200,00 deal, knowing he wasn’t going to be pitching for the Padres this season. Other teams in Major League Baseball shied away from paying Verlander, with the knowledge of his injury. As a matter of fact, the Padres were the only team to call JV, and because of that, he decided to give the Padres a discount for taking a chance on him. Then they had a litany of short-term injuries as well which included Matt Strahm, Austin Adams, Dan Altavilla, Javy Guerra, Pierce Johnson, Austin Nola, and Trent Grisham. With all the injuries that occurred in San Diego, the Padres brass were still completely ok with heading into the season with the squad they had in place. However, when you play in the same division as the Los Angeles Dodgers, one of the deepest and most talented teams Major League Baseball has to offer, you don’t have time to stand pat, because you’ll miss your window of opportunity. The Dodgers can thank their amazing scouting team and their management for building a super team from within. LA doesn’t have to make any moves, and they can field the best team in the league for many years to come. However, even with some generational talent on their team like Cody Bellinger and Clayton Kershaw, they still went out and brought in Mookie Betts from Boston. This is the Padres number 1 competition. Something had to be done, or with all the injuries this was going to become a lost season. Then something happened. The Pads got wind that the Toronto Blue Jays had placed young Vladimir Guerrero on the trade block. The opportunity to team up two of baseballs youngest and brightest stars in Fernando Tatis and Vlad, was something they just couldn’t pass up on. They knew if they were going to land Vlady, they were going to have to come with a huge offer, and that’s just what they did. They wanted to make an offer that the Jays couldn’t refuse. The final agreement looked like this:
Blue Jays Get:
SP Ryan Weathers SP Chris Paddack
RP Jordan Guerrero CF Jorge Mateo
#47 Prospect C Luis Campusano #15 prospect INF CJ Abrams
Task number one, bring in Vlad, check!
Two days later, GM DP was in his office when he seen an ESPN alert that the New York Mets have placed newly acquired Francisco Lindor on the trade block. Even though they had an elite shortstop already on the roster in the aforementioned Tatis. DP, didn’t care, he still wanted to see what the asking price for Lindor was. He got in touch with the Mets GM Bob and wasted no time as they immediately began a back and forth with a negotiation for Lindor. When the dust settled, the Padres once again sent a shock wave around the league as they were able to bring in Lindor in the following package.
SP Blake Snell SP Yu Darvish 2B Tucupita Marcano
Task number two, bring in Lindor, CHECK!
Many questioned how Parm was going to integrate Lindor in the lineup with Tatis, Machado and rookie Ha-Seong Kim (#19 on the top 100 prospect list) already in the starting lineup, but DP and the Padres didn’t let that bother them as they had a plan. With Lindor’s defense at shortstop, they already knew he was going to be their starting shortstop. Being a rookie in pro ball, is hard enough without needing to learn a new position, so they already knew Kim was going to play second, with no question. They could have moved Vladimir Guerrero Jr. to Right Field to play the same position as his father, Hall of Famer Vladimir Guerrero Sr., but with Guerrero’s defense already being weak as is, they decided there is no position outside of first base for him. That left the Padres with Tatis Jr. and Machado, with only one infield position remaining at third base, Machado’s current position. Ultimately, they decided Fernando’s skills set was best for third base, and Manny Machado’s skill set would allow for him to be a successful right fielder, maybe not immediately, but eventually. They aren’t thinking he’ll become a Gold Glove Right Fielder like he was at third, but they have confidence in him to get the job done on a daily basis.
On April 26th, The Padres had a losing record of 11-13, things weren’t looking very good for them. Despite Machado racking up three errors in RF, but hitting the cover off the ball, and Tatis playing great defense at third, and both Kim and Vlady both having positive Zone Ratings in their respected positions, the management in San Diego knew this slow start wasn’t due to their offense or defense. They knew they sold off too much pitching, and they absolutely had to do something before the season got away from them. Young starters Adrian Morejon and McKenzie Gore were pitching well, and Dinelson Lamet was pitching like the staff ace they still had two spots in the rotation that were not producing like they had hoped. Joe Musgrove was going through some growing pains with his new team, and youngster Nabil Crismatt was just being out classed by the incredible hitting of the Major Leagues. At this point San Diego was greatly missing Blake Snell, Chris Paddack, Yu Darvish, and Ryan Weathers. Furthermore, the LA Dodgers started the season hitting on all cylinders and raced off to a fabulous 22-5 start through April. One thing was certain, they needed to make another move to find another arm, because Clevinger, Verlander and Nix weren’t walking through the locker room door any time soon. They scoured the waiver wire and came up empty. Parm checked his phone and realized he had a voicemail from earlier in the day. To his surprise it was Bob, the Mets GM. The message informed Parm that Bob had come up with a “crazy” trade proposal (his words not mine), and crazy it was indeed. The offer was Starting Pitchers Noah Syndergaard and Jacob DeGrom for Fernando Tatis Jr. After his initial reaction of “Fuck That” to the proposal, GM Dustin started to really think about the offer. We have the position players to theoretically absorb the loss of Fernando and bringing in not one, but two perennial Cy Young candidates started to sound good to the man in charge. This move would absolutely bring them back into the playoff conversation, as there had been trolling remarks of how the Padres ruined their once promising roster, but if you ask Padres fans, the injury bug is what was doing them in as Clevinger and Nix would have surely helped this roster succeed. Parm finally made the decision to call Bob back. Bob answered the phone and was happy to hear from the Padres. The conversation was short and sweet. “Lets fucking do this!” Parm said to Bob, and Bob laughed maniacally, and said “Excellent. But before we can announce this move, I must tell Jacob, because he has a no-trade-clause in his contract”. Which reminded Parm that he should probably check that extension Tatis signed before his tenure. Sure enough, Tatis also has a no-trade-clause. Parm talked to Tatis, simultaneously as Bob spoke with Jacob. A few minutes later Parms cell rang, and it was Bob. He eagerly answered his phone. “Well, what is the good word my man?” Parm said when answering his phone, and Bob, sounding depressed, replied, call it off man. DeGrom isn’t willing to waive his NTC, he’s not going anywhere.” “Funny” Parm said, “turns out Tatis also has a NTC, and he isn’t willing to waive his either”. Just like that, what could have been the Padres third blockbuster of the short season, was shot down with no other options anywhere.
The next day, there was a breaking news bulletin on ESPN. The Rockies, a divisional rival to San Diego had placed Starting Pitcher German Marquez on the trade block. This was the guy they were going to have to go all in for, and with it this pitcher being in the same division as them, they knew it wasn’t going to be easy to pick him up. Over the next day or two the Padres and Colorado were in constant
communication. As it turns out, there was another team vying for Marquez services. If they wanted to land this guy they were going to have to add their top remaining prospect Robert Hassell III, something the Padres initially were unwilling to do. Eventually, they gave in and said “fine, we will add Hassell”. The other unbeknownst team to the Padres, must have also had a really good offer because Colorado GM Aaron still needed time to make a decision. The next morning, Aaron called up the Padres and told them listen, if you are serious about adding Hassell, then German is yours, I’ll take your offer”! The transaction that brought German Marquez to San Diego was the following: Colorado Rockies Get: 2B Jake Cronenworth RP Tim Hill RP Pierce Johnson
LF Robert Hassell III SP Jagger Haynes
This trade was a win-win move in my opinion, because since Cronenworth has gone to Colorado he has raked! He is hitting a blistering .341 with a .417 OBP 2 big flies and 10 RBI. Tim Hill has been lights out in his 12 Innings pitched for the Rockies with a 4:1 strikeout to walk ratio and a 2.25 ERA. Hassell and Haynes are going to take time before they are ready to break into the majors, but depending on how they develop, the Rockies could very well be the winners of this trade. German Marquez has been as advertised since joining the Padres Rotation going 3-1 in 4 starts and having all of those starts being Quality Starts. He also has superb 1.53 ERA. Since making this trade, the Padres have gotten hot and have played to a 16-4 record in their last 20 games, bringing them not only back into the playoff conversation but right to the front of the wild card position. There is still work to be done if they want to compete for the division though, despite the Dodgers going 11-9 in their last 20 games, they still hold a nice 5 game advantage over the lovable Padres.
It is now March 24th and San Diego still wasn’t done making blockbuster-esque moves. Seeing an opportunity to improve their defense the Padres made a move to bring in defensive extraordinaire Byron Buxton from Minnesota. The players that got sent to Minnesota for Bux looks like this: Twins Get: SP Brett Kennedy SP Efrain Contreras 3B Sean Guilbe
With Machado playing RF, and there being no DH in the NL for the foreseeable future, San Diego had another dilemma on their hands. They now have four outfielders and only 3 outfield positions. Machado isn’t going to be the odd man out, and neither will newcomer Byron Buxton. That left the Padres with a tough decision. Do you take Tommy Pham out of the lineup, who is hitting .337 with 5-HR 17-RBI and a 2.0-WAR, while playing with a positive zone rating in LF (.2) or do you take out 24-year-old Trent Grisham who has talent oozing out of his ears? What did the Padres do? They did what they’ve done all season. They made another block buster trade. Realizing that they need bull pen help and maybe even needing one more starter for this season, DP decided before going to bed last night, he was going to send out two offers. One to Mets for Diaz, and one to the Blue Jays for Nate Pearson. The Mets high on Diaz since acquiring him from Seattle in December of 2018 were still on the fence by the offer they received. But ultimately, they decided to take the offer, leaving Parm in a weird position. Toronto must have caught wind of the potential deal, as they got in touch with DP, knowing he has attempted to bring in Pearson since literally the day after the Vlad trade, to inform him that they too will take the offer presented to them. This left Parm in an awkward position. He reached out to Bob once again, and Bob told him, listen its cool, I was 51/49 on taking the deal, so if you go another direction, I won’t hold it against you, which caused Parm great elation, and he called the Jays back with a “LFG! Let’s do this!” So, without further ado, the trade that will bring in their newest player looks like this:
San Diego Gets: SP Nate Pearson RP Danny Salazar
Toronto Gets: SP Joe Musgrove CF Trent Grisham RP Javvy Guerra
SP Jacob Nix
This move now gives the Padres a young rotation that looks like this:
1.) Dinelson Lamet (28 Years old, and the eldest statesman)
2.) German Marquez (26 Years old)
3.) Nate Pearson (24 Years old)
4.) Adrian Morejon (22 Years old)
5.) McKenzie Gore (22 Years old)
Now we have a comment from Dustin Parmelee himself.
“I had a vision when I took over here in San Diego, and well my vision is almost complete. There are still a few minor phases I have yet to accomplish, but I think in the grand scheme of things, we have built a team here that can compete with the Dodgers, and the other great teams in the MLB. Not only that, but with the youth and talent of this squad, we should be able to see immediate success and sustain that success for quite a while. We also still have Clevinger and Verlander who will both be ready to go next season. Will all this equal a championship? I don’t know, but with the effort I have bestowed upon this team, I absolutely hope that we can finally bring a championship to the great fans of The San Diego Padres. Of course, only time will tell. Let’s Fucking Go!”