When the Winter Meetings began in Florida, Jed Hoyer made arguably the biggest move of this MLB offseason when he traded perennial All-Star Adrian Gonzalez to the Boston Red Sox. Now, I have made my thoughts known on the Adrian trade but I will add this one last thing.
Seeing Adrian in a Red Sox jersey was not easy to see. Look, I know its for the best blah blah blah, still not easy. But I am happy for Adrian as he will finally get the national attention he deserves. That has already begun as Adrian Gonzalez found himself on Jim Rome's radio show this morning. So, to that I say, good for Adrian.
Now, onto the Padres holes. Let's not kid ourselves, there are multiple. This morning, Padres manager Bud Black called XX1090 and answered this question "If you had to write the lineup today, how would you do it?" The answer:
1B: Kyle Blanks
2B: Logan Forsythe
SS: Evereth Cabrera
3B: Chase Headley
LF: Ryan Ludwick
CF: Cameron Maybin
RF: Will Venable
C: Nick Hundley
Now, I don't know about you, but that middle infield is nothing I would feel comfortable starting the 2011 season with. And now steps are being taken to fix that.
Via Corey Brock, MLB.com's Padres beat writer (@FollowthePadres on Twitter) reported tonight that a deal appears to be in place for the Padres to obtain Tampa Bay Rays SS Jason Bartlett for Adam Russell and Cesar Ramos. Before we go on its worth noting that this deal has not been officially announced yet but, assuming this happens I have to say that I love this move.
Jason Bartlett, in a down year in 2010, hit .254 with 4 HR. In 2009, Bartlett .320 with 14 HR. His career line shows the potential for consistent offense from the SS position which, prior to the Tejada trade, was something sorely missing in 2010.
More importantly, however, is that it shows that when Jed Hoyer says that the Padres are not giving up on 2011 despite the Adrian trade, he means it. Is Jason Bartlett an Adrian Gonzalez? Of course not. But making moves of this nature and trading for a SS who has been an All-Star does show, at least to this fan, that Jed Hoyer has not attention of simply packing it in for 2011.
So, the hole at SS appears to have been filled. Rumors have been swirling that the Padres are looking at available 1B including Derrek Lee, Lyle Overbay and Adam Laroche. And Bud Black did not discredit the idea of bringing back Eckstein to play 2B.
So yes, Adrian is gone, but Jed Hoyer and the Padres staff are being very active at the Winter Meetings. And despite the small payroll they have to work with, effort is being made. And frankly, all I want to see is some effort to field a competitive team in 2011. Jason Bartlett is step one.