The San Diego Padres are clearly serious about landing a big free agent, and they may be developing a preference for one more than the other.
According to Jon Heyman of Fancred, the Padres may be leaning toward a pursuit of outfielder Bryce Harper, partially for marketing and business reasons, despite having more of a positional need for third baseman Manny Machado.
Padres ownership is said to view Bryce Harper as a business/marketing opportunity and despite the positional need at 3B may now lean toward Harper over Machado (also Manny not want to go west). Question now is whether San Diego could outbid a team with stupid $ (plus others).
What is clear is that the Padres are serious about landing one of the two biggest names left on the free agent market, and it doesn’t appear to be the only move they want to make. If they can swing these moves, it would certainly set them on the path toward instant credibility, with Harper becoming the new face of the franchise.
The San Diego Padres have suddenly been linked to the top names on both the free agent and trade markets, and there is reason to believe they are doing more than just window shopping.
Jon Morosi of MLB.com was told by a rival executive this week that Padres general manager A.J. Preller is “trying earnestly” to sign one of Bryce Harper or Manny Machado in addition to trading for Miami Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto. Morosi notes that the idea is not all that unrealistic, as the Padres could add a $30 million salary and still be somewhere in the middle of the league in payroll. They also have a very deep farm system and could potentially make the Marlins a solid offer.
In addition to the aforementioned big names, the Padres have also reportedly shown interest in free agent right-hander Gio Gonzalez, who is 33 and coming off a down year. Gonzalez, a two-time All-Star, posted a 10-11 record and 4.21 ERA in 2018, but he went 3-0 with a 2.13 ERA in five starts after the Washington Nationals traded him to the Milwaukee Brewers. He could end up being a bargain.
All indications are that the Padres are serious about making a big splash, so it’s just a matter of whether or not star players want to play in San Diego. If they’re willing to offer top dollar in what has been another quiet free agent market, they may have a leg up on other teams.
It’s no secret that the Chicago White Sox are interested in Manny Machado, and some of the team’s players were happy to take up the recruiting pitch at the team’s fanfest.
White Sox first baseman Yonder Alonso — who also happens to be Machado’s brother-in-law — FaceTimed Machado during the opening ceremonies of SoxFest on Friday and joined Yoan Moncada and Jose Abreu in making a pitch for the star infielder to come play in Chicago.
Alonso FaceTimed Machado during #SoxFest2019 opening ceremonies w/Abreu & Moncada. Yoan says at seminar they told him how much they wanted him & need him. Machado was getting ready to play golf. Added we’d like you here & if you can make that happen, we’d be glad. #WhiteSox
There has been some speculation that the White Sox acquired Alonso to try to sweeten the pot for Machado. They certainly can’t have any complaints about his recruiting efforts, though it doesn’t seem that Machado is close to finding a landing place at this time.
The San Diego Padres are very interested in Manny Machado, but there are some hurdles to clear before the team signs him.
According to Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Padres want to meet with Machado ahead of a potential pursuit, but there is some chatter that the infielder would not want to play on the west coast. However, there are also apparent concerns from some players about his conduct.
A few things from today.#Padres would want to meet Manny Machado. So far have only met with agent. There’s lot of talk he really doesn’t want to play on West Coast, and there are real concerns other players have about him. Padres believe Hosmer, Kinsler will be good influences.
The Padres have some veterans in the clubhouse, like the aforementioned Ian Kinsler and Eric Hosmer. The hope is that if Machado signed players like that could help keep him out of trouble.
The concerns likely stem from Machado’s conduct in the playoffs, as well as comments indicating an unwillingness to hustle. Other teams have also had concerns about this, but it’s one thing for a front office to have questions and another issue entirely to have to walk into a skeptical clubhouse.
Acee says that the Padres are “legitimate suitors” for Machado despite their late entry into the situation.
Machado’s market has largely been limited to three or four teams this offseason, depending on who you ask, with the Chicago White Sox and Philadelphia Phillies considered to be the primary suitors. The New York Yankees have been involved, but there are conflicting reports as to how interested they actually are.
Depending on how serious their rivals are, the Padres could have a very real chance. It likely depends on how much they’ll be willing to pay up, and how close they come to meeting Machado’s demands.
There has been a lot of information leaking out in recent days about Manny Machado and the offers he has or hasn’t received, and it should come as no surprise that the slugger’s father says numerous teams are trying to sign his son.
In an interview with Dominican reporter Hector Gomez on Friday, Machado’s father Manuel said Manny has outstanding offers from four different teams, and at least one of them will surprise you.
Several reports have claimed the White Sox made Machado an offer, though there are plenty of questions about the dollar amount. The Phillies are also said to be intent on signing either Machado or Bryce Harper, so they may have extended a formal offer. However, Jon Heyman of Fancred says neither the Yankees or the Dodgers have made one.
Yankees talked concepts with Manny but since the sides were very far apart the only official offer they made was paying his dinner at Ristorante Morini on Madison and 85th (and that was before Tulo and LeMahieu). As for the dodgers, they have not made an offer for him this winter https://t.co/GesvKFxXt6
There have been reports that Machado would prefer to sign with the Yankees, so they are probably waiting things out to see how the market unfolds. As for the Dodgers, Machado already seemed to bid farewell to them in a social media post, and there has been zero indication that they are interested in bringing him back.
Of course, anything Machado’s father says about the market for his son can be taken with a grain of salt. We saw by the way Machado’s agent slammed some recent reporting that the All-Star’s camp is not happy with the information floating around, and his father is part of that camp.
Rumors have intensified in recent days about free agent infielder Manny Machado, particularly relating to reported negotiations with the Chicago White Sox. In an unprecedented step, Machado’s agent is pushing back against some of those rumors.
Dan Lozano, who represents Machado, issued a statement Wednesday blasting two specific recent reports as “inaccurate and reckless,” adding that reports about Chicago’s negotiations with Machado are “completely wrong.” He further suggested that someone may be violating the Collective Bargaining Agreement’s prohibition of conducting negotiations through the media by leaking information to reporters, specifically USA Today’s Bob Nightengale and ESPN’s Buster Olney.
Dan Lozano of MVP Sports Group, the agent for Manny Machado, released the following statement regarding recent reports: pic.twitter.com/MmKy9doaFz
The fact is there are a lot of people on both sides of negotiations selectively leaking to the media for various reasons, and there are contradictory reports everywhere you look. It is unusual, however, for an agent to take the step of releasing a statement singling out some of these reports as false.