Good news for Padres fans?
According to MLB.com's Corey Brock, it seems that San Diego general manager Josh Byrnes is open to bringing in another starting pitcher from outside of the organization at some point during the six weeks of spring training. Said Byrnes:
There might be a need [to add a pitcher] but there might not be. There is a chance we can solve [the rotation] with our own guys. The thing about the offseason [is] we haven't pursued guys just to add bodies. But if we feel there's an upgrade, someone with upside or a long-term guy, then OK.
It's not a secret that the Padres have no shortage of candidates for the starting rotation in camp this year.
With only Clayton Richard, Edinson Volquez and perhaps Jason Marquis guaranteed spots in the rotation, guys like Anything Bass, Casey Kelly, Tyson Ross, Eric Stults, Robbie Erlin and Freddy Garcia will be competing to round out the rotation.
Though the front office may find their remaining arms in that bunch, it's nice to know that there are still free-agent pitching options available and that the Padres' front office isn't totally closed to adding another starter before the season starts.
A few names to consider:
Kyle Lohse: Is he too expensive for the Padres to consider long-term? I'm still wondering why he's still available at this point in the year. Is there something we don't know? Scouting or injury reports that baseball insiders are aware of and the general public aren't privy to?
I've always been a fan of Lohse and signing him to the team. He's a veteran pitcher, has had two back-to-back quality seasons and would be a perfect fit in San Diego—if only the front office would come through.
Roy Oswalt: Sure he's older and has had his share of injury problems over the last couple of seasons, but if Oswalt can stay healthy, he could fit in well in still-spacious Petco Park. If he can even show a glimmer of his prior self, signing him to a one-year deal could prove to be a huge low-risk, high-reward option for the Padres.
Chris Young: Young hasn't been able to stay healthy going back to his Padres days, but when he was injury free, he proved to be a solid pitcher in Petco. My biggest fear, though, is that he won't ever be able to stay healthy again during a full season. Is he another low-risk option? Sure, he could be. But is it worth reading that Young has hit the disabled list again? I've read it before.
Not impressed? Should the Padres just stick with the guys they've already signed?
Said manager Bud Black to MLB.com, "We feel good about the names."
Whatever the Padres decide to do, keeping their options open is always a better strategy than relying on uncertainty.
With a few decent options still available, I would hope that Byrnes is cranking the phones and trying to make something happen before another club beats him to the punch.
We shall see...