Window Shopping: Padres
In part two of our Window Shopping series, we look at the San Diego Padres, who gave up on the season before it began.
Forget it, he’s going nowhere. Aside from Jake Peavy — who has been on the block since last November — Gonzalez is the only draw the Padres have, he’s an elite player, and he’s locked up through 2011 for a bargain-basement price. It would take a minimum of Fernando Martinez, Wilmer Flores, and Jenry Mejia to get GM Kevin Towers to pick up the phone — and that’s where the conversation would START.
Peavy has already been traded once, to the White Sox, and he exercised his no-trade clause. Even if the Mets could put together a package for him (they can’t, or won’t), he is not interested in coming to New York. Unless, of course, the Mets were willing to extend his contract by five years and $100M (they’re not). Oh, and he can’t be moved until he comes off the disabled list. Next!
Brian Giles & Cliff Floyd
The Padres couldn’t shake themselves of Giles before his injury, and now that he’s on the DL, are stuck with him a few weeks longer. Similarly, Cliff Floyd is languishing on the 60-day DL and going nowhere. Not that the Mets were interested in either veteran outfielder.
Ironically, the Padre most likely to be traded is Heath Bell, who has emerged as a top-notch closer. The Mets would prefer to pretend he doesn’t exist, rather than make a deal for him. And in any case, they’re more likely to trade for a bat than a setup man. Watch Bell find his way to the AL East, or, if Brad Lidge continues to struggle, Philadelphia.
Before he went on the DL with a hamstring injury, Eckstein was having a typical year — hitting around .270, getting on base about 33% of the time, playing decent defense, and being an all-around pest. The Mets could have signed him for about one-third what they’re paying Alex Cora, but now they’ll have to give up a mid-range prospect to obtain him. He could be helpful filling in at both 2B and SS, if the price isn’t too high. His hustling, pesky, scrappy play might not turn the Mets into world-beaters, but it would be appreciated by a fan base growing more disinterested by the day.
There isn’t much available from the last-place Padres, and most of what they do have to offer is injured. You think the Mets are hurting? San Diego’s DL list is a near mirror image of their Opening Day 25-man roster. Their top two starting pitchers, #4 starter, starting catcher, backup catcher, starting second baseman, starting left fielder, and starting right fielder are all on the DL. In addition, they traded their Opening Day centerfielder (Jody Gerut) and the guy who took over in centerfield (Scott Hairston). And their record is only about 5-6 games off from where the Mets currently stand.
Eckstein is the only guy who might draw interest from the Mets, but he’d have to come really cheap. Hairston would’ve been someone to consider, had he not headed to Oakland. Form the record, I’m not crazy about Hairston, who to me is having one of those Gary Mathews, Jr. one-hit wonder years. Let him stay in Oakland.