The MLB trade deadline makes for some strange bedfellows. How else could we possibly explain the San Diego Padres’ reported interest in Oakland Athletics ace Sonny Gray?
According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Padres have joined seemingly half of Major League Baseball to show interest in the 27-year-old former All-Star.
“Looking for a dark horse (for Gray)? Try the Padres, who would be somewhat of a curious match, considering that most of their best prospects are in the lower minors,” Rosenthal reported. “The Pads, though, have shown steady interest in Gray, apparently viewing him as a possible fit in their long-term plan.”
As with pretty much every other team looking to acquire Gray, he would not be a rental for the Padres. That makes their interest in his services a bit more realistic.
Though, as Rosenthal clearly indicates, San Diego’s top prospects are currently playing low-level minor league ball. None of the Padres’ top-10 prospects (per MLB.com) have made it as far as even Triple-A this season. And while the organization is loaded from a farm system standpoint, Oakland might want players closer to making an impact in the Majors.
Considering the Chicago Cubs, New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers have all shown the most interest in Gray, it might be a hard sell for the Padres to entice Oakland. All three of those teams have Major League-ready prospects to offer the A’s. In fact, stud outfielder Ian Happ has come up in trade talks between the Cubs and Athletics.
In any event, the more teams that decide to get into a bidding war for Gray, the better Oakland will come out of a potential trade surrounding the ace.
Gray, who is signed through the 2019 season, is pitching to a 6-5 record with a 3.43 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and solid 3.25 FIP in 16 starts this season. He’s the top starter currently on the market prior to Monday’s trade deadline.