MLB Rumors: Padres Interested in Gio Gonzalez Amid Bryce Harper Buzz

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorFebruary 1, 2019

Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez (47) throws during the first inning of Game 1 of the National League Championship Series baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Friday, Oct. 12, 2018, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Jeff Roberson/Associated Press

The San Diego Padres, who recently joined the race for free-agent outfielder Bryce Harper, are in on free-agent left-hander Gio Gonzalez, according to Jon Morosi of Fox Sports and MLB Network.

Morosi explained the impact Gonzalez would have in a Padres uniform: "Gonzalez, 33, would add experience to a Padres rotation that may otherwise consist entirely of starting pitchers who are 28 and younger. Gonzalez has pitched effectively at Petco Park, with a .592 opponents' OPS in five starts. And Gonzalez is represented by Scott Boras, the same agent as Harper."

The left-hander did not enjoy a productive 2018, as he went 10-11 with a 4.21 ERA for the Washington Nationals and Milwaukee Brewers. After leading the National League with 79 walks in 2017, Gonzalez had one more in 2018 despite pitching 30 fewer innings. Per FanGraphs, Gonzalez also had the highest xFIP and second-lowest strikeout rate of his career.

But a change of scenery could do some good for Gonzalez, who finished sixth in the 2017 National League Cy Young race thanks largely because of a 2.96 ERA. As Morosi noted, Gonzalez has found success in Petco Park, which has played as a neutral to pitcher-friendly park over the years. He also could be the ace (or No. 2 pitcher) on a staff where no potential starter had a sub-four ERA last season.

The Padres open their season at home against the San Francisco Giants on Thursday, March 28.

Related

    Minors: Padres first-rounder CJ Abrams fills up box score in pro debut

    San Diego Padres logo
    San Diego Padres

    Minors: Padres first-rounder CJ Abrams fills up box score in pro debut

    San Diego Union-Tribune
    via San Diego Union-Tribune

    Police Seeking Man Involved in Brawl Caught on Video at Youth Baseball Game

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Police Seeking Man Involved in Brawl Caught on Video at Youth Baseball Game

    Rob Goldberg
    via Bleacher Report

    John Cena showed up at a Padres rookie's MLB debut to settle a bet -- here's why

    San Diego Padres logo
    San Diego Padres

    John Cena showed up at a Padres rookie's MLB debut to settle a bet -- here's why

    Katherine Acquavella
    via CBSSports.com

    Padres notes: Mejia a factor at, behind plate; Yates catches Bell; Margot on the bases

    San Diego Padres logo
    San Diego Padres

    Padres notes: Mejia a factor at, behind plate; Yates catches Bell; Margot on the bases

    San Diego Union-Tribune
    via San Diego Union-Tribune