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National League Contender Urged to Trade for Pitching Depth

The San Diego Padres have been full of surprises this season. After trading for Dylan Cease that followed up with a Luis Arráez deal, the Padres want more. According to Ken Rosenthal and Dennis Lin of The Athletic, the Padres are “eyeing another of the Chicago White Sox’s top pitchers.” This time, the Padres have shown strong interest in Garrett Crochet, per sources briefed on the White Sox’s discussions.

“San Diego’s need for starting pitching grew last week when Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish landed on the injured list. President of baseball operations A.J. Preller already has demonstrated unusual urgency this season by acquiring Cease from the White Sox during spring training and Luis Arráez from the Miami Marlins early last month,” wrote Rosenthal and Lin.

Padres Pursuing Trade for Garrett Crochet

It’s evident that the Padres trades thinned out a farm system that might not be that attractive from a White Sox perspective. The White Sox shouldn’t have to move Crochet, who is the club’s top remaining pitcher. The right-hander is making $800,000 as he will be arbitration-eligible until 2026. That amount of control could be another blockbuster deal despite the Padres possibly facing challenges to come up with a good package.

Can the Padres Get a Trade Done?

Lin and Rosenthal said that according to a person familiar with the team’s thinking, they “likely would require at least one position player prospect with significant upside.” San Diego has that in catcher Ethan Salas and shortstop Leodalis De Vries. However, the Padres are reluctant to discuss either player unless they receive an established star in return. Preller did trade James Wood and MacKenzie Gore in 2022. Both prospects were untouchable, yet they were a part of the trade to acquire Juan Soto from the Washington Nationals.

The Padres have been aggressive in pursuing Crochet, sources said. It’s seen as a standard operating procedure for Preller, who is among baseball’s most active general managers. But in regards to Darvish and Musgrove, Darvish could return from his groin strain by the end of the month. Musgrove is out until at least July after recurrences of the elbow inflammation that sidelined him a month ago. The Padres do see Adam Mazur to be major league ready despite a 7.11 ERA he put up in four starts in the Pacific Coast League this season. Randy Vásquez, who’s filling in for Musgrove, has a 5.74 ERA in six starts with the Padres.

The Padres have seen their fair share of different pre-trade deadline blockbusters. The discussions that led up to the Cease trade could help by making a second one with the White Sox. Nothing is imminent at this time and it remains to be known if the Padres will go ahead with it with the right players to close out another massive trade.

Main Photo: © Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports


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