The San Diego Padres had one of the busiest offseasons in Major League Baseball, striking blockbuster trades to land Yu Darvish, Blake Snell, and Joe Musgrove. With just over seven weeks until this year’s trade deadline, general manager A.J. Preller appears to have his sights set on adding another All-Star player to his roster.
According to Dennis Lin of The Athletic, the Padres are “particularly interested” in Rangers outfielder Joey Gallo, who Preller and manager Jayce Tingler know from their shared time in Texas.
Gallo, 27, was shopped last summer and is expected to again be one of the top hitters on the market. In his first 58 games this season, he’s hit .207/.365/.389 (113 OPS+) with 10 home runs and four stolen bases. For his career, he’s a .208/.331/.486 (112 OPS+) hitter who has accumulated 130 homers and 24 steals. In addition to having another season of team control remaining, Gallo’s experience in center field, as well as in right and at first base, gives him more defensive versatility than is typical of three-true-outcome-heavy sluggers.
The Padres are without starting center fielder Trent Grisham because of a heel contusion, leaving them no choice but to rely upon the underperforming Jurickson Profar. Adding Gallo would allow the Padres to shift Profar back to his super-utility role. The Padres would have a surplus of outfielders once Grisham returned from injury, though both Tommy Pham and Wil Myers have missed time this season, and it’s at least possible the Padres would try to move Pham for financial purposes. (Pham is making more than Gallo this season.)
While it’s unclear who the Padres would have to part with in order to add Gallo to the mix, it’s all but certain San Diego won’t be moving infield prospect CJ Abrams. CBS Sports recently detailed why Abrams is a star in the making.
The Padres entered Tuesday with a 37-25 record, good for second place in the National League West, 1 1/2 games behind the San Francisco Giants.