The San Diego Padres look ready to mortgage some future for 2020 impact, especially if it means moving Wil Myers and his contract.
The San Diego Padres have made major free agent investments the last two offseasons, signing Eric Hosmer and Manny Machado. Some early moves this offseason have left Wil Myers without a clear fit in the lineup, and made him a trade candidate.
According to Jayson Stark of The Athletic, the Padres are “more motivated than ever” to trade Myers and they are willing to attach prospects to get a deal done.
Myers is under contract through the 2022 season, and he’s due to make $20 million in each of the next three seasons. After playing in just 83 games in 2018, he was healthy last year (155 games), but hit just 18 home runs with 53 RBI and a .239/.321/.418 slash-line over 490 plate appearances.
Myers had a 20-20 season (28 home runs and 28 stolen bases) and earned an All-Star nod in 2016, and he hit 30 home runs (with 20 stolen bases) in 2017. But the last two seasons he’s been closer to an average or replacement level hitter and player (-0.3 bWAR last year). He also struck out in 34.3 percent of his plate appearances last season (168 strikeouts).
Myers mostly played in the outfield for the Padres last year, with 101 starts mostly coming in left (40 starts) and center field (58 starts). But the acquisitions of Tommy Pham and Trent Grisham have pushed him out of the mix there, and the corner infield positions he could also play are of course manned by Machado and Hosmer.
Manager Andy Green was fired with a few games to go last season, and general manager A.J. Preller is firmly on the hot seat after Padres executive chairman Ron Fowler set high expectations for 2020 with a “heads will roll” proclamation if things aren’t better.
The Padres have the top farm system in baseball, with five of MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 prospects even after some notable guys (Fernando Tatis Jr., Chris Paddack, Cal Quantrill) were promoted last season.
A report from back in September suggested the Padres would likely be willing to eat half of what Myers is owed ($30 million) if it means being able to get rid of him. A prospect or two to sweeten the pot can only help, and perhaps facilitate getting a needed bankable asset (like a starting pitcher) in their effort to move all-in for next season.