There are so many things that could prevent the Padres from sending Adrian Gonzalez to the Los Angeles Dodgers. San Diego probably won’t want a player of Gonzalez’s caliber hanging around the NL West. Los Angeles’ owner situation may make them unable to take on Gonzalez’s current salary, let alone sign him to an extension.
Still, the Dodgers may be looking to upgrade over James Loney at first if Loney can’t keep his slugging percentage above .450. Last year, he couldn’t even slug .400.
Yes, it’s very unlikely, but as I’ve said before, the trade market for Gonzalez may not be as big as you think.
In that link, I outlined that the Padres should look for a proven minor league hurler with ace potential, an unproven minor league hurler with ace potential, a good catching prospect, and another solid hitting prospect if they are to deal A-Gon.
I took a look at how the Red Sox fit that bill in the original article, and did a follow-up looking at Atlanta filling San Diego’s needs.
So, what can the Dodgers offer?
(If you’re reading this article on the Chicken Friars homepage, click “Continue Reading” for the rest of the entry).1.) Josh Lindblom is a mildly interesting Triple-A guy, but he’s not even expected to be a starter long-term. Double-A’s Chris Withrow had a phenomenal age-20 season in 2009, but has hit a speed bump in 2010. He’s the only logical fit, with a mid-90′s fastball, plus curve, and potential to be a 220-inning workhorse.
2.) The Dodgers have some intriguing young arms (Aaron Miller, Ethan Martin, Allen Webster, etc.) but the one that really intrigues me is Garrett Gould, an 18-year-old with arguably the best HS curve in last year’s draft. He is the sort of guy who has a 10-in-25 chance and never reaching the majors (due to how far away he is and how much can go wrong) but a very real 1-in-25 chance at being an ace.
3.) Lucas May brings roughly the same skill set as Nick Hundley. The 25-year-old hit .306/.390/.468 in Double-A last year, and could be a solid starting catcher.
4.) Since Withrow is struggling this year, May has had an up-and-down career, and Gould is still a complete unknown, I’ll have to go a bit higher here than I did with Atlanta and ask for Double-A center fielder Trayvon Robinson, a power-speed threat hiting .260/.336/.439 with eight steals. Kyle Russell, a High-A outfielder with 40-HR potential and tremendous outfield defense, would be a backup option, but his all-or-nothing offensive approach could be a problem at Petco, a la Khalil Greene/Kyle Blanks (2010).
I don’t like this deal as much as the one with Atlanta, and it comes with the added issue of putting Gonzalez on a division rival that already has some budding offensive stars. On the plus side, if they sign Gonzalez to an extension, it would somewhat hamstring LA finanically, and if he didn’t pan out, that would weaken their winning potential severely for the next few years. The deal also takes arguably their two highest-upside pitching prospects away and adds to San Diego’s cadre of potential frontline starters.
Something to think about, at the least.