The offseason move of the San Diego Padres completely defies expectations. With Kim Ha-sung and Fernando Tatis Jr., two shortstop resources, they found the same position as the first priority for recruiting in the free agent market. Although he was rejected by Trey Turner (Philadelphia), he surprisingly acquired Xander Bogarts for 280 million dollars in 11 years. San Diego’s acquisition of Bogarts was also unexpected, and the price far exceeded expectations.
On the 17th (Korean time), the American sports media ‘The Athletic’ reported that rival teams also have doubts about the direction of San Diego. As one executive pointed out, “It would have been better to sign Jose Abreu than to sign Bogatz for a position where there were quality alternatives.”
In fact, San Diego, which does not deserve a first baseman, showed interest in Abreu, a giant with 243 home runs in the free agent market. However, Abreu signed a three-year, $58.5 million contract with the Houston Astros, not San Diego. After that, San Diego actively jumped into the shortstop market and caught Bogarts.
Bogarts is a shortstop with a batting average of .292 and 156 home runs OPS of .814 over 10 seasons. He won the Silver Slugger five times, but his defense is weak, as evidenced by his lack of Gold Glove awards. The Athletic also pointed out that “Bogatz can show similar offensive power to Abreu, but the overall team’s defense will weaken as Kim Ha-seong moves to second base.”
With Bogarts coming in as shortstop, San Diego moves to second base, shortstop Kim Ha-seong, a finalist for the Gold Glove this year. 토토 Existing second baseman Jake Cronenworth is also a good defensive player, but he moves to first base after being hit by a bullet from Bogatz. The Athletic pointed out that “the move from second base to first base reduces Cronenworth’s overall value.”
San Diego’s acquisition of Bogarts is also a long-term preparation. They needed a slugger for insurance as their starting third baseman Manny Machado could become a free agent by opting out after next season. Furthermore, in a situation where outfielder Juan Soto is also released as a free agent two years later, it is possible to minimize the power loss of the other line by catching Bogatz in advance.
The Athletic also noted this, but “San Diego is also facing a pitching problem.” Starters Darvish Yu, Blake Snell, and closer Josh Hader will qualify for free agency after next season,’ he said. ‘The Padres are looking for another starter as well as a hitter. Justin Turner is also one of the possibilities,’ he said, mentioning the possibility of additional infielders.
Turner, who was also the clubhouse leader as a starting third baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers for nine years from 2014, showed signs of an aging curve this year. He was released as a free agent as the Dodgers did not exercise his team option for next year’s $16 million salary. With the Miami Marlins showing interest, the possibility of going to San Diego was also discussed. If Turner comes to San Diego, he is likely to be used as a third baseman and designated hitter to back up Machado. Regardless of whether they are recruited or not, just paying attention to the infield, which is already saturated, shows San Diego’s move to reject mediocrity.