Atlanta Braves prospect Cristian Pache who is a young defensive wizard could be enticing to the San Diego Padres.
The San Diego Padres priority for the 2019 season is to improve their pitching staff.
Multiple reports indicate that the team has spoken to several other franchises about acquiring potential starting pitchers. Names like Noah Syndergaard, Trevor Bauer, Marcus Stroman, and Matthew Boyd have all surfaced in the past few months as possible trade targets for the Friars.
With the emergence of Dinelson Lamet in the past few weeks and the continued dominance of MacKenzie Gore, among other pitching prospects, the Padres might be adjusting their assessment of the team and what is truly needed. This ever-changing, self-evaluation process usually equals success.
Don’t get me wrong- the Padres would love to add a frontline starting pitcher to mix with their young prospects. However, the team is not about to jeopardize the future. Logan Allen and Cal Quantrill have both impressed this year in limited opportunities. The Padres have options. It’s too early to start dealing prospects left and right. Allen and Quantrill might not be proven ace-like pitchers, but they are more than capable of getting the job done. More and more young hurlers are on the way. Gore, Ronald Bolanos, Michel Baez, Adrian Morejon, Emmanuel Ramirez, Reggie Lawson, Pedro Avila. The Padres have no shortage of young hurlers. The before mentioned men will probably all make their major league debuts within the next 15 months, and that is a good thing. The franchise might want to add an ace, but if they are patient, a few “aces” could emerge from this bunch of young pitchers.
With a stacked young infield, plenty of catching prospects and a system full of pitching, what do the San Diego Padres need for the future?
Right now, the Padres appear to be looking at centerfield options for the long term. CJ Abrams was draft this June, and there is the thought that the left-handed-hitting shortstop will eventually be moved to the outfield. With his speed and plus arm, a move to center just makes sense. Hudson Head was also selected in the draft, and the left-handed-hitting outfielder is another option for the Padres down the road at the position. But both these men are teenagers though and still playing rookie-level baseball in Peoria.
At the major league level, Manuel Margot is regarded as the centerfielder of the future. He is still 24, and there are signs of progression from the right-handed hitter of recent. His May OBP jumped up to .345, which much more productive than his usual sub .300 mark. They are signs, but the Padres are starting to get impatient. He is not getting on base at a consistent rate, and that is an issue for a player who should be a top of the order presence.
Reminiscent of how A.J. Preller and company acquired Francisco Mejia last season before the trade deadline, the Padres could once again pull off a trade for a highly regarded prospect. There are a few that make sense, but no other prospect fits the Padres’ need more than the Braves’ Christian Pache. The right-handed hitter is 20-years-old and performing well at the Double-A level currently. He has a .867 OPS in 316 at-bats for the Mississippi Braves with 11 homers and 48 RBIs. His bat has really started to progress over the last year, and the reports of his hitting abilities get better each month.
The quick right-handed swing is nice, but Pache is regarded as the best defender in the outfield of all minor league prospects. That says a lot. Most scouts predict a Gold Glove in his future, as he gets excellent jumps on fly balls and has a rocket arm to boot. Pache would be an above-average outfielder now at the major league level. The 6-foot-2 Dominican has an immense passion for the game and will have no problem enjoying success at the major league level. At the very least, Pache should be an average player for a long time. That is what most scouts truly believe.
The Braves are not going to deal this young man unless they are swept off their feet. Luckily the Padres have what the Braves currently need. Atlanta’s number one need is bullpen help. Kirby Yates is a decent starting point as the Braves need relief pitching to compete at the next level. But the Padres will need to include more? Pache is a special talent, and it will be difficult to pry him from the hands of the Braves.
Brad Hand and Adam Cimber were dealt last year for Francisco Mejia and most did not think that would happen. Would Yates and a prospect get the deal done? Dealing Yates for yet another prospect might give some fans the wrong idea but, if the team can get considerable value, they will make a trade. The future of this team is what is important. Kirby Yates stabilizes the bullpen, but the Friars have options. Andres Munoz, Trey Wingenter, and Jose Castillo, to name a few. These next two weeks will be pivotal for the future of the franchise, and Cristian Pache could be a very interesting trade target for the San Diego Padres.