Diving into the depths: San Diego Padres

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This is part of a 30-article series looking at each team’s depth chart headed into spring training.
San Diego Padres
Rotation
1. Jon Garland
2. Kevin Correia
3. Chris Young
4. Clayton Richard
5. Tim Stauffer
6. Sean Gallagher
7. Mat Latos
8. Aaron Poreda
9. Wade LeBlanc
10. Edward Mujica
11. Cesar Ramos
12. Will Inman
13. Cesar Carrillo
14. Steve Garrison
The surprising addition of Garland leaves just one opening in the San Diego rotation. Stauffer, Gallagher and Latos figure to battle it out in spring training. I prefer Latos and Gallagher, but Stauffer could have the early edge, given his 3.58 ERA in 14 starts last season.
Bullpen
1. Heath Bell
2. Mike Adams
3. Luke Gregerson
4. Joe Thatcher
5. Edward Mujica
6. Ryan Webb
7. Adam Russell
8. Radhames Liz
9. Luis Perdomo
10. Greg Burke
11. Aaron Poreda
12. Mark Worrell
13. Ernesto Frieri
14. Craig Italiano
The bullpen hasn’t received any reinforcements — not unless Liz counts — but it’s the strength of the team anyway. I like Webb’s chances of becoming this year’s Gregerson.


Catcher
1. Nick Hundley
2. Yorvit Torrealba
3. Dusty Ryan
4. Mitch Canham
First base
1. Adrian Gonzalez
2. Kyle Blanks
3. Oscar Salazar
Second base
1. David Eckstein
2. Jerry Hairston Jr.
3. Matt Antonelli
4. Sean Kazmar
Third base
1. Chase Headley
2. Jerry Hairston Jr.
3. Oscar Salazar
4. Logan Forsythe
Shortstop
1. Everth Cabrera
2. Jerry Hairston Jr.
3. Sean Kazmar
4. Jesus Lopez
The Torrealba signing isn’t official yet, but all signs point to it happening. That should finish off the infield. Headley will be an everyday player after moving back to his original position, and Hairston and Salazar will serve as reserves. If Gonzalez is eventually traded, then Blanks will take over at first base.
Left field
1. Scott Hairston
2. Kyle Blanks
3. Aaron Cunningham
4. Jerry Hairston Jr.
5. Matt Stairs
6. Chad Huffman
Center field
1. Tony Gwynn Jr.
2. Scott Hairston
3. Luis Durango
4. Chris Denorfia
5. Aaron Cunningham
Right field
1. Will Venable
2. Kyle Blanks
3. Aaron Cunningham
4. Matt Stairs
5. Oscar Salazar
6. Chris Denorfia
While the infield is set, the outfield still looks like a mess. I have Hairston, Gwynn and Venable atop the depth chart, but none of the three projects as a long-term regular for the Padres. If Blanks is kept as an outfielder, he’ll probably just end up getting hurt again. Still, he may well be the second-best hitter in the organization and it’s hard to blame the Padres for doing everything they can to get him into the lineup. Cunningham is the one player here that I believe will start in the outfield for the Padres in 2011. He may head back to Triple-A for a little while first, though.

Watch: Mike Trout ties MLB record with his 25th home run

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It was only a matter of time before Mike Trout courted another all-time record, and on Saturday, he found himself in elite company with his 25th and 26th home runs of the season. He put the Angels on the board with a 429-foot blast in the first inning, depositing an 0-1 fastball from the Orioles’ Kevin Gausman into the left field bleachers:

In the third inning, with the Angels up 2-1, Trout returned to tack on another insurance run. He targeted Gausman’s slider for his second solo shot of the evening and cleared the center field fence with a 418-footer to bring his total to 26 home runs on the year.

Trout has mashed at a staggering .339/.471/.596 clip since his return from the disabled list last month, and Saturday’s totals helped mark his sixth consecutive season with at least 25 home runs. That’s a record few have matched before their age-26 season; in fact, only Hall of Fame sluggers Eddie Mathews and Frank Robinson have ever pulled it off.

Assuming he continues to rake in hits and plate appearances over the last six weeks of the regular season — and there’s nothing to indicate that he won’t — Trout is in line to join elite company of a different kind. The 26-year-old entered Saturday’s game with a 206 OPS+ (park-adjusted on-base plus slugging). According to MLB.com’s Matt Kelly, that means Trout’s hitting at a better clip than the average Major League player by a full 106 percent. Should he finish the year with a 200 OPS+ and 502 plate appearances or better, he’ll be the first player to do so since Barry Bonds obliterated the competition with his 263 OPS+ in 2004.

Blue Jays acquire Tom Koehler from Marlins

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The Blue Jays acquired right-hander Tom Koehler from the Marlins in exchange for minor league right-hander Osman Gutierrez and cash considerations, the clubs announced Saturday. Koehler is in his sixth year with the Marlins and stands to make $5.75 million in 2017. He’ll be arbitration eligible in 2018 and is set to enter free agency by 2019.

The 31-year-old right-hander struggled to a 7.92 ERA, 4.7 BB/9 and 7.1 SO/9 over 55 2/3 innings with Miami in 2017. He was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans in late July, where he rebounded with a 1-1 record in seven starts and whittled his ERA down to a 1.67 mark. The Blue Jays have yet to establish Koehler’s role within their organization, but are hoping to see a turnaround from the righty when he breaks back into the big leagues.

Gutierrez, 22, was assigned to Single-A Greensboro on Saturday. He has yet to find his footing in the minors, and exited a 78-inning stint with Single-A Lansing after racking up a career-worst 7.85 ERA and 8.2 SO/9. His lack of control is particularly alarming, with a 6.2 BB/9 that dwarfs the 2.0+ BB/9 of seasons past, but he still has plenty of time to figure out his mechanics before reaching the Show.