The San Diego Padres have had a disappointing 2015 season. The team was supposed to contend in the National League West, but has failed to play consistent baseball all season long. They currently sit five games under .500 and it is pretty safe to say the team will not make the playoffs this season.
The recent three game losing streaks at the hands of the last place Milwaukee Brewers, has killed all momentum the team had earned in the beginning of their 10 game road trip. A shame because the Padres had a nice road trip going until that point.
Losing three straight from a team with 63 losses is very 2015 Padres though. This same team, just one week earlier, took two games out of three from the New York Mets who are suddenly on fire and have passed the Washington Nationals for first place in the Eastern Division. This inconsistency has plagued the team all season long, and you truly do not know which Padres team will show up on a nightly basis.
The team finished their road trip with a record of 5-5. Playing .500 baseball the rest of the season will do nothing towards the chances of this team making the playoffs. The Padres have a 1.5 % chance of making the playoffs (according to FanGraphs). The fact the team made no trade deadline deals, does not mean they will not trade anyone before the August 31st waiver deadline.
According to Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe, the Padres have put outfielder Matt Kemp and starting pitcher James Shields on waivers. What does this mean? Will the Padres trade either player before the deadline, or will the Padres allow another team to just assume their contracts if claimed?
James Shields is owed $63 million for the next three seasons plus a buyout of $2 million if the team declines his $16 million dollar option for the 2019 season. Meanwhile Kemp is due $87 million over the next four seasons. A team would have a hard time taking on all that salary, but it is not unheard of. Especially if adding a bat like Kemp or an arm like Shields brings a Championship.
The fact the Padres are trying to get Shields and Kemp through waivers early in the month of August would leave you to believe the team will be active in the trade front. Shields could fetch a decent return for a team looking for another starting pitcher. He is an absolute workhorse and it is rumored the Yankees, Angels, and Cubs are all interested in his services to an extent. Shields is due a hefty sum plus he has the ability to opt out of his deal after the 2016 season. Teams will be weary of that fact in a potential deal with the Padres.
Something to watch very closely as it appears that A.J. Preller might be once again on the prowl. The Padres are surely looking to improve their team for the 2016 season and beyond. If that means trading a few players here and there, then the team will do what it has to do. These next nine weeks are going to be critical for shaping and developing the future of this team. We shall see what direction this team goes. A.J. Preller has big dreams, and we should all be thankful he is at the helm.