The Major League Baseball (MLB) San Diego Padres’ chances of making the postseason are dwindling, but if they continue to be in “buyer’s market” mode, they may be able to land a Korean duo.
On Aug. 22 (KST), Sports Illustrated’s “Inside the Padres” analyzed where the Padres need to add to their roster in a piece titled “Positions San Diego Needs to Address at the Trade Deadline (Aug. 1)”.
As of Aug. 22, San Diego was 47-51 on the season with a .480 winning percentage. They are in fourth place in the National League West and 5.5 games out of the third wild-card spot (Philadelphia Phillies) for a postseason berth.
With more than 60 games left in the season, it’s not time to start talking about elimination, but fall baseball in San Diego is looking tough. According to baseball stats site Baseball Reference, San Diego has a 21.7% chance of making the postseason. That’s down 13.6% in the past month.
It certainly pales in comparison to the pre-season expectations. In addition to the midseason acquisition of Juan Soto, the Dodgers added Xander Bogaerts in the offseason (11 years, $280 million) and locked up Manny Machado, 31, with a massive 11-year, $350 million contract. With such a lavish lineup, San Diego appeared to be the favorite. But the reality is grim.
But it’s not without hope. San Diego has a +43 goal differential through 22 games, the best of any team in the wild card race. According to Pythagorean winning percentage, which is based on goal differential, San Diego should have won seven more games than they have. 먹튀검증 In other words, if they can get that part of their game back on track, they could be a postseason contender again. This could be accomplished by bringing in the necessary resources.
The media lists catcher, middle relief, and first base as the top three positions of need for San Diego. The only name that came up was Choi. He was listed as a “first baseman to watch” alongside Joey Meneses (Washington) and Bobby Dalbec (Boston).
Choi, who has struggled with injuries and poor play since joining Pittsburgh, is batting .186 with five home runs, nine RBIs, and a .684 OPS this year. The numbers don’t look great. However, since returning from his Achilles injury, Choi has had a great July with three home runs and an OPS of 0.930 in nine games. On the 22nd, he took a pitch from Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels) for a three-run home run.
Pittsburgh is also currently in last place in the National League Central with a .433 winning percentage. This has led to speculation that the team may look to move veteran players at the trade deadline. Add to that the fact that Choi and Pittsburgh were at odds before the season over a salary adjustment request and whether or not to participate in the World Baseball Classic (WBC). There are plenty of reasons for Choi to be traded.
San Diego needs a first baseman for a reason. According to baseball stats site FanGraphs, San Diego’s team WAR (wins above replacement) at first base this year is -0.2, which ranks 26th out of 30 teams in the big leagues. While hitting is a key position, the team OPS is a dismal .641, good for second worst.
The addition of Bogart required a move for existing shortstops Ha-Sung Kim and Fernando Tatis Jr. (24), with Tatis moving to right field and Kim moving to second base. The existing second baseman, Jake Cronenwirth, was moved to first base. Kronenwirth is not a big bat, but he has a history of hitting 20+ home runs (21 in 2021) and can play every position in the infield, so the move to first base was expected to maximize his hitting ability.
But the reality was different. In 96 games this season, Cronenwirth hit just .208 with eight home runs, 37 RBIs, and a .656 OPS. Against a league average OPS of 100, his OPS+ is 85, which is below average. Compare that to the double-digit home runs (11) the converted second baseman already has. “San Diego has the potential to get a good player at first base for the foreseeable future,” the outlet said.
If the Padres were to bring in Choi to bolster their first base depth, it would create a Korean duo with Kim Ha-seong. Choi, who became the first Korean-American to share a starting lineup with Bae this year in Pittsburgh, could be paired with a Korean leaguer once again. We could even see Choi receive a pitch from Kim and drive in Kim, 28, with a base hit.