San Diego Padres Rumors: Ryan Ludwick to Cleveland Indians

Michael ClineCorrespondent IJuly 30, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JULY 6: Ryan Ludwick #47 of the San Diego Padres hits a double driving in two runs against the San Francisco Giants in the first inning during an MLB baseball game at AT&T Park July 6, 2011 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

As early as tomorrow, Ryan Ludwick could be a Cleveland Indian,

Scott Miller of CBSSports.com has reported.

The outfielder was acquired by San Diego in a three-team deal involving the Indians and Cardinals. The Padres sent a prospect to Cleveland, and they sent Jake Westbrook to St. Louis.

It's easy to say that the Ludwick deal has turned out sour. Ryan has not posted a high average, or driven enough baseballs out of the park, and the Padres think it is time to move him.

Cleveland is the front-runner to acquire Ludwick, followed by the Pirates. And while Ryan isn't the best bat available, he would be a solid addition to a lineup in playoff contention.

Ryan's contract is worth $2.27 millon, so there is much incentive for a $45 million payroll club to unload a player who is now posting a .238 average. The price for Ludwick shouldn't be high, states Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer.

Who would be Ludwick's replacement in left field? Buddy Black would most likely place Chris Denorfia, and Jesus Guzman as a utility player.

Jed Hoyer must move Ryan Ludwick, despite him leading the Padres in many offensive categories (excluding average).

And while Ludwick may have more success in a different ballpark, his production in the lineup must be replaced by other Padres if San Diego wants to finish with a decent record.