Friday, October 1, 2010

The Padres Future: Corner Infield

This is the 2nd in a 6 part series.

Current Starters: 1B - Adrian Gonzalez, 3B - Chase Headley

2011 Outlook:

I would think the Padres will be bringing Adrian back. The only way he is not the 2011 first baseman is if the Padres get an offer they can't refuse. Pencil him in.
The cheap Padres will also almost assuredly bring back Chase Headley to play 3B. Chase played very good defense but saw his OBP drop this year. He did not advance this year as a hitter. His offensive numbers would be fine as a shortstop or second baseman, but not as a third baseman. He will most likely be back as the starter.

2012-2013 Outlook:

1B will be a huge question beyond 2011. If the Padres ink Adrian to a long term deal then he will be starting there for several more years. If Adrian expects 8 years $150 million then we may be looking at Kyle Blanks. Other 1B options include Cody Decker, Allan Dykstra, Craig Cooper, and Matt Clark. Cooper would likely be no more effective offensively than Headley at 3B. Cody Decker and Matt Clark are showing some promise. Dykstra may be the most talented of anyone not name Adrian, but needs to put together more than "half" of a productive season. My guess is Kyle Blanks is our starting 1B in 2012.

3B is even less certain. I can't imagine the Padres keeping Headly around too much longer if he can't get on base or produce runs. The Padres have James Darnell and Logan Forsythe in the waiting. Another intriguing prospect is Edinson Rincon. I think Rincon is more than 2 years away. We could be talking about him in 3-4 years. Gyorko has an outside chance, but I think the Padres are grooming him for the 2B job if Antonelli can't secure it. If Headley hits .290 with improved power he could be here another 3-4 years. If Headley comes back in 2011 with .260 and 12 HR, then Darnell and Forsythe will be competing for a starting MLB roster spot in 2012.

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