By: Noah Wright
In the latest San Diego Padres news, the team has said that they are interested in current Mets’ ace Noah Syndergaard. After all they are without a real ace for 2019. With a handful of young prospects almost ready for MLB action, a rotation anchor with some team control is a need be. Syndergaard had a nice 2018 rebound season, as he had a 3.03 ERA, 2.80 FIP, and 1.212 WHIP in 154 and a third inning. On a team friendly deal, and good performance with healthy, he’ll definitely be expensive to acquire. However the Padres have one of the best farm systems in the MLB, and could afford Syndergaard’s price. Now I want to go over what a package for Syndergaard would look like, but I also want to to over what this means about the Padres future.
The Padres probably wouldn’t want to move Fernando Tatis Jr., or Luis Urias. The Padres do have much more past that though. One name the Mets could try to ask about is Mackenzie Gore. The 19 year old left hander is currently ranked #13 according to mlb.com’s rankings. But the prospect the Mets would probably ask for first is catching prospect Francisco Mejia. Mejia, the centerpiece of the trade that sent Brad Hand to the Cleveland Indians, has shown great success in the minors with the bat, and has one of the best catching arms. Last season he batted .293/.338/.471 with 14 long balls, and 68 RBI’s between the Indians’ and Padres’ Triple-A teams. One of The Mets’ issues they’ve suffered from in the last few seasons is a good man behind the plate, and the Padres already have a nice option in Austin Hedges there. Another player that probably would be included in the package would be one of their multiple outfielders. More specifically one of Franmil Reyes, Wil Myers, or Travis Jankowski. A reasonable package would probably be comparable to something like the Chris Sale trade. A reasonable package for Noah Syndergaard would probably look something like this: Mets acquire Mackenzie Gore, Francisco Mejia, Logan Allen, a mid-level prospect, and Travis Jankowski from The Padres for Syndergaard. This way the Mets acquire 3 top 100 prospects. Gore and Mejia are ranked in the top 30 in the MLB.com rankings. Logan Allen is ranked as the #76th best prospect in the MLB. He’s 21 years old, and pitched extremely well in the minors last season. In 148 and two thirds innings of work split between Double-A and Triple-A, Allen had a 2.54 ERA, 3.22 FIP, and 1.083 WHIP. He could be very valuable to the Mets in the near future. Travis Jankowski is a light hitting outfielder, but his speed/baserunning is a valuable asset to a team. His base running was given 1.5 UBR and stole 24 bases last season.
This move could mean much more to the Padres future. The Padres are a team that seem to make some contradicting moves. For example, the team extended Brad Hand last season, only to trade him at the deadline. Another example would be when they extended Wil Myers, but his name has been brought up in multiple trade rumors. But a trade for an ace would represent that they may be on the path of competing, and determined to stay on that path. They probably won’t be ready to compete in 2019, but in the ‘19-’20 off season, this team should be looking to add some pieces, or extend others. The 2020 season could be the time for The Padres to go for it. They won’t have many large contracts on the books that off season. The biggest are likely Wil Myers and Eric Hosmer. While they may not be the best contracts, both could still be assets nonetheless.
The Padres being linked to acquiring Noah Syndergaard is an interesting rumor. However when you look at it, it makes some sense. For one, the Padres easily have the farm to acquire such a high value player. They have a top 5 farm system. Also, The Padres are on the verge of competing. They have a handful of prospects (ie Tatis Jr., Luis Urias, Chris Paddack, Josh Naylor) that are on the verge to make an impact in the bigs. If the Padres do acquire Syndergaard from The Mets, this team could be ready to compete by 2020, if prospects develop as expected, and the team acquiries other proven players to fill gaps.