Sean Manaea joins San Diego’s rotation, Padres aim 2022 World Series title

Published on

It has been announced that the Oakland Athletics traded left handed-pitcher Sean Manaea to the San Diego Padres in exchange for Euribiel Angeles and Adrian Martinez. Also moving to San Diego was Aaron Holiday, a 13th round pick in the last MLB draft. The Athletics were not all losing from the trade, however, as former Padres pitcher Martinez made it to the AAA level in 2021.

Manaea’s presence in the Padres’ looker room gave San Diego an apparent boost in their rotation. The Padres’ starting contingent, which includes Yu Darvis, Blake Snell, and Joe Musgrove, now has more strength and flexibility in their formation. So much so that the team’s total win prediction jumped to 87 from the previous 86.5 wins.

“He’s a terrific teammate. I’ve always called him the world’s best teammate. He’ll fit in really well here,” said an enthusiastic Padres new manager Bob Melvin. The skipper moved from Oakland to San Diego earlier in October 2021. Melvin was a mentor for Manaea throughout the player’s six-year big league career. Understandably, Melvin was excited to welcome his old friend.

Manaea’s move to the Padres also received strong reactions from the A’s fans. This includes legend and three-time World Series champion Dave Stewart who said:

“Hopefully this is my last goodbye until the trade deadline. Sean Manaea who came to the A’s via trade, and was a solid part to everything good in the clubhouse and on the field. I’ll miss the many hair styles, the playfulness, most of all his professionalism. You will be missed!”

That being said, Darvis, Snell, and Musgrove are known for being fragile. The fact that Manaea made only 16 starts from 2019 to 2020 also does not help. Additionally, despite the increase in total win prediction, San Diego is still below division powerhouses Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants. The Padres, however, have it easier now to finish third in the division. That is if they are content with finishing only third.

San Diego in race to win 2022 season

After the 2022 season ends, Manaea, Mike Clevinger, and Musgrove will become untethered. Meanwhile, Darvish and Snell will enter free agency themselves after the next season. It is then clear why Sand Diego president of baseball operations and general manager A.J. Preller seem to be hasty in strengthening the Padres. Understandably, the team will keep Manaea. Chris Paddack’s fate in the team, however, is a bit more unclear, as reported by MLB insider Bob Nightengale.

“The San Diego #Padres are keeping Sean Manaea, and have no plans to flip him, while continuing to engage with teams on starter Chris Paddack,” he posted on Twitter earlier on Monday after the news of Paddack being almost traded to the New York Mets last weekend surfaced.

It appears that the Padres will start the Opening Day with Darvish. Snell, Musgrove, and Manaea will then start games two, three, and four, respectively. Clevinger will then start the fifth game if he is declared healthy as he is currently on the injured list after sustaining an injury to his knee.

That being said, there is no other time more crucial than 2022 for the Padres to claim victory, mainly due to the free agency issues discussed above. This season, unless San Diego makes another move, will be the last time five ace pitchers are on the same team that is the Padres. There is, then, no other time for the team to fulfill its 2022 breakthrough ambition.

Commenting on the dire situation, Darvish said: “I’ve never thought about it until now,” as quoted by The San Diego Union. “But when you mention that, it’s a precious moment right now for us.”

“A precious moment” is an understatement. It is rare for the Padres to have the current formation which includes a rotation comprising five ace players. Earlier, Clevinger underwent a second Tommy John surgery, barring him from the entirety of the 2021 season, while Manaea just joined recently.

“I think we have the best [group] on the planet, but obviously I’m biased,” Clevinger said. “I don’t think you can go out and really get what we’ve got in this room right now, especially if we can stay healthy.”

Even before Manaea packed his bags to move to San Diego, the Padres were actually strong with four star players in their rotation. San Diego players know this well and they are confident in what they can do.

“In a four-game series, you’ve got those guys stacked up,” catcher Austin Nola said before the move. “You feel pretty good about our chances to be in every game.”

“It’s going to be tough love for a lot of teams coming in,” said newly acquired designated hitter Luke Voit. “You don’t get a day off with any of our starters. It’ll be fun to watch.”

The rotation also receives near heavyweight payrolls. It is now up to the Padres whether to disappoint fans with a failed return.

“When you have a $200 million payroll, you would think that’s exactly the case,” Melvin said, commenting on the time-is-now discourse,

“You get that type of support from ownership, it gives you a chance to win and gives you the type of payroll where you can go out and pay some guys, which we’re doing right now. I absolutely think that’s where we are right now.”

Melvin, a four-time division winner and three-time manager of the year, knows full well that the payrolls come with a burden.

“The expectations should be high for this team,” Melvin continued.

San Diego also recently succeeded in luring Nick Martinez out of Japan, all while MacKenzie Gore seemingly readying himself to abord enter the fray. On the other hand, injured former starter Dinelson Lamet is currently awaiting a decision. Former Texas and Oakland player Jurickson Profar, meanwhile, said he was eager to help the Padres record a triumph. Throughout his seven years with the Padres, Preller has not managed to record even a single winning record.

“It’s exciting,” Profar said.

San Diego Padres

The San Diego Padres are an American professional baseball team based in San Diego. The Padres compete in Major League Baseball as a member club of the National League West division. (wikipedia)

Harry James
Harry James' love for sports began in his high school basketball days. Sadly, an injury meant he couldn't further his NBA dreams, but the hooper's loss is our gain as he then found journalism.

Popular Posts

Exit mobile version