This is a project where 30 people got together to act as the GMs of the 30 MLB teams with the idea of conducting the offseason in one week. This is what happened in this simulation, not a prediction of what will happen in real life.
By Dan Kolton
This was my third year participating in the Mets360 Mock GM project, and I enjoyed it just as much as I did the past two years. From turning the Mets into a powerhouse franchise the first year, and not really having a plan the second year with the Nationals, being the General Manager of the Padres was a completely unique experience. Although I had a plan on how I wanted to build the organization, things did not go exactly as I planned, but I am still pleased with the final outcome of the Padres in this project.
Outfield Speed: Petco Park is notorious for being one of the most pitcher friendly ballparks in the MLB. With the walls so far back, I wanted to acquire speedy outfielders who could cover all of the outfield grass to avoid the opponent teams from hitting a large amount of doubles/triples. From the very beginning, I wanted to acquire Billy Hamilton, and was lucky enough to do so with my first trade. However, it meant that I had to take on the contract of Homer Bailey, but more on that later. Angel Pagan and Rajai Davis were two free agent signings that I made in order to add more speed in the outfield, and Travis Jankowski stole 30 bags last year and was already a part of my organization.
Building the Bullpen: With Hamilton now on my team, I had acquired 1/3 of the players on my “must have” list. Next was a trade for the Yankees’ Dillon Betances. This trade also hurt a little, being that I had to give up Tyson Ross and Manuel Margot, but for a talent like Betances, how could I resist?! And finally on my list was Aroldis Chapman. One of the top free agents in the project, I really had to dip into my wallet to acquire the best closer in the game. However, I had money to spend and was able to give Chapman a $25 million deal. With a bullpen that looks like the following, I could not be more pleased with the outcome.
7th inning Capps
Homer Bailey: Bailey was pushed on me by the Reds GM as a player I had to take in order to receive Hamilton and Brandon Finnegan. With money to spend and the hopes of throwing him into a deal to another team, I took on Bailey and his $19 million contract. I then tried to add Bailey to every trade conversation I was a part of, but nobody would take him off my hands. A large contract for a pitcher who has been plagued by injury in recent years, let’s hope Bailey has a renaissance at Petco Park.
The Original Roster: When I gave up the Nationals to take on a random organization, I had no intentions on being the GM for the Padres. However, when I received the email telling me my team and salary, I looked up the Padres’ roster and cried myself to sleep. Maybe if I had the Padres roster entering 2016, I would have been a little happier, but this roster was full of useless players that I knew would be hard to trade away. Therefore, I had to give up a ton of prospects in order to make trades (but that being said, this project was solely about the team’s 25 man roster…so at the end of the day it is not a huge deal).
Midterms: Yes, I am a college student. Yes, this project did happen to take place on a week in I had my first two midterms in the middle of the week. Therefore, my head was not completely in this project at all times, which definitely led to me making some questionable moves and not negotiating to the extent I wish I had. So please, keep this in mind when you rip me apart in the comments section…
The new look of the Padres is not ideal, but I am happy with it. I would probably give myself a B+, because I believe that I successfully improved the two most important aspects of a team that plays 81 games at Petco Park. Also, I believe I get a boost for the new logo brings back the mustard yellow and brown coloring and incorporates the Swinging Friar!