The Padres swapped All-Star closer Huston Street to the Angels last night in a six-player trade and they likely aren’t done making deals.
According to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, the Padres are expected to trade outfielder Chris Denorfia before the July 31 non-waiver deadline. The 34-year-old is batting just .244/.295/.329 with one home run this season, but he owns an .809 OPS against southpaws for his career and could be a useful platoon player/extra outfielder for a contender. He’s making $2.25 million in 2014 and will be a free agent this offseason.
The return for Denorfia will likely be minimal, but the Padres could fetch more if they end up dealing third baseman Chase Headley, right-hander Ian Kennedy, and new closer Joaquin Benoit. All three names continue to surface in trade rumors, with the Blue Jays among the teams linked to Headley.
Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.
In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.
The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.
The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.