Padres blockbuster for Josh Hader is great for Dodgers, Juan Soto
By Jason Reed
The MLB trade deadline creates the wildest few days of the baseball season and this year’s event could have several massive blockbuster deals.
The San Diego Padres made the first of those as they try and catch the Los Angeles Dodgers, trading for Milwaukee Brewers reliever Josh Hader.
San Diego has been very aggressive over the last three seasons as they try to punch up to their NL West big brothers. This trade is no different with Milwaukee getting a fairly big return for a reliever that has struggled over the past month.
The Padres traded Chris Paddack for Taylor Rogers at the beginning of the season and the two southpaw relievers have been comparable. Rogers has a 4.35 ERA and 1.11 WHIP this season while Hader has a 4.24 ERA and 1.12 WHIP. Are we sure the Padres are actually getting better in this deal?
This trade doesn’t really change much for the Dodgers, who have historically seen Hader pretty well in the times they have faced him. In fact, the entire NL West beats up on Hader, which is a bad sign for the Padres.
The three teams that Hader has the worst ERA against with at least 10 innings pitched are the San Francisco Giants, Colorado Rockies and Dodgers, in that order. Against the Boys in Blue, Hader has a 3.75 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. Really not great.
This guy’s supposed to be shutting the door against contenders … not pulling a Craig Kimbrel every time he faces them.
This Josh Hader blockbuster could make Juan Soto more likely for the Dodgers
We know that the Padres aren’t afraid to make moves, but this big trade (and overspending) for Hader might make it less likely that the Pads are able to beat the Dodgers’ best offer for Soto.
The price for Soto is going to be incredibly high, and combining that with this Hader deal is going to take away from the Padres’ young talent to offer. Yes, Soto is young as well, but the aggressiveness in this Hader deal could signal that the Padres are less likely to meet the demands of the Nationals and are instead pivoting elsewhere to upgrade.
While San Diego and the St. Louis Cardinals have been the two teams tied the closest to Soto, you cannot rule out the Dodgers. Andrew Friedman and Co. work in silence and, at the end of the day, Los Angeles does have the power to make the best offer while keeping enough young talent to ensure the future remains promising.
Either way, San Diego is still trying to play catch up with the Dodgers and fans shouldn’t worry about the little brothers down the I-5 until they can actually win a playoff series, let alone a regular-season series against LA.