Friday, November 13, 2015

Hot Stove Update: AJ Preller Dismantles Padres Bullpen

A day after AJ Preller dumped Joaquin Benoit and his $7.5 M salary on the Seattle Mariners, he shipped Closer Craig Kimbrel to Boston for a nice haul of prospects including highly touted OF prospect Manuel Margot.  Here are some brief summaries of the players involved:

RHP Craig Kimbrel- Kimbrel was not quite as lights out for the Padres as he had been for Atlanta, although he was still very good.  Boston had huge issues in their bullpen last year and Kimbrel gives them an elite closer to build around.  The move also moves Koji Uehara down to setup man.  Boston will need to do more than just add Kimbrel but it's a heckuva start.

OF Manuel Margot- Margot is a 21 yo OF who played well in High A and AA ball last year.  He is a 5-tool player who can take over CF for the Padres as early as sometime next season.

SS  Javier Guerra- Guerra is a 20 yo who hit .279 with 15 HR's for low A Greenville last year.  He'll require some more development time, but looks to eventually play a premium position in the majors.

LHP Logan Allen- Allen is 18 yo and was drafted in 2015.  He struck out 24 batters against just 1 BB in 23 IP in rookie league and a few innings of SS ball.

2B  Carlos Asuaje- 24 year old who had a disappointing season in the AA EL but put up nice K and BB ratios.  Us Giants fans know about those.  He may get to chance to compete for a MLB job this spring.

This trade may work out in the long run for the Padres.  I will give Preller credit for getting a lot more and better prospects back for Kimbrel than he had to give up to get him, so the flip gambit looks like it worked.  In the short term, it leaves the Padres with no recognizable names in their bullpen.  Preller is presumably not done making moves for the winter, so it's too early to declare them out of contention for 2016, but this is looking an awful lot like a long term rebuild.

Like I said earlier, acquiring Kimbrel gives the Red Sox a cornerstone to build a bullpen around and they have prospects galore to trade.  They will need to add more bullpen pieces to make it all work, though, and this is an awful lot to give up for just a closer.


Padres- B+ Albeit with short term pain.

Red Sox- B.  Addresses a big need, but gives up a lot and they will need to make more moves to make it pay off.


  1. Padres all-in to rebuilding in 1 year? Setup guy gets traded and now the closer. Upton is all but gone. Tyson Ross wouldn't be a bad pickup for a #3 if they would trade within the division. Sounds a little like Jack "the trader" McKeon from back in the day.

  2. That is a pretty good haul for the Padres for one reliever. Also shows that relievers are at a premium which is good news to the Giants who my have a surplus.

    Billy Baseball

  3. The tear-down rebuild might have also contributed to Kennedy declining his option.

  4. And Brett Anderson takes the Dodgers QO, nothing like paying a 5th starter 15.8MM! Overrated stats nerds running the show there, they keep this up Dodger fans are going to be crying for the return of Special Agent Ned.

  5. I know the Dodgers have unlimited money it seems but what other business does it makes sense to basically throw away tens of millions of dollars. Their salary tax this year will be about $44MM. Horrible business model to throw away all that money. One day it will come back to bite them.