Yesterday, the Padres traded third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff and Eric Sogard to the A’s for outfielders Scott Hairston and Aaron Cunningham. From what i’ve seen on Padres.com, facebook, and other places, there are mixed thoughts about the trade. I’m going to break this trade down and explain why the trade was made from the Padres perspective.
With Kouzmanoff gone, that allows Chase Headley to move back to his former position, 3rd base. Now, before you start to say that Headley only has a .263 career average and only 21 homers in 2 full seasons, remember that Chase had to transition to the outfield, and was still working on his defensive skills. That might have taken more time away from practicing his hitting, and he hasn’t played a full season as a starter in the big leagues yet. It should be interesting to see Chase develop into an everyday big league third baseman.
Another reason this deal was made is because it clears the outfield log jam in left field, and allows Kyle Blanks to play left field on an everyday basis. Scott Hairston will be the starting center fielder and will be backing up Adrian Gonzalez in the lineup, with Tony Gwynn Jr as his backup. In right field, Will Venable will most likely start, and Luis Durango, if he begins the season with the Major League Club, will platoon in all the outfield positions.
If no more starters are traded, the Padres 2010 opening day lineup will mostly look like this:
Should be interesting to see what happens.