Every single contending big league team could use an upgrade in their bullpen. That is no exaggeration, and many of the top teams need help specifically at the back end of games.
Quality relievers can be hard to come by at the trade deadline. The San Diego Padres are uniquely positioned, then, to make a deal and get some good value in return. Jon Heyman of CBS reports that both Huston Street and Joaquin Benoit are drawing a lot of interest from potential suitors.
The Padres are receiving the most trade inquiries on back-end bullpen stalwarts Huston Street and Joaquin Benoit, which should come as no surprise considering the seasons they are having and the needs of contenders.
Street and Benoit should bring valuable pieces back. Another bonus for interested teams, neither has a no-trade clause. Ironically, both were acquired in good deals by just-fired GM Josh Byrnes, Street in a trade from Colorado and Benoit as a free agent.
Given the firing of Byrnes, the Padres’ front office is being run by a committee of three executives. That might make their activity around the deadline a bit unclear, but a rebuilding process is all but guaranteed given the state of the franchise.
Street has a skill when it comes to making fans nervous, but the nibbling closer continues to get the job done. He has converted 20 saves this season with a stingy 0.96 ERA. Some of that success comes thanks to Petco Park, but he will surely be a key acquisition for whatever team lands him. One imagines that the Detroit Tigers, Baltimore Orioles, and Los Angeles Angels will lead that charge.
Benoit, signed to a two-year, $15.5 million deal this off-season, has been very effective as well. In 31.2 innings of work he has a 1.42 ERA and a 10.5 K/9 mark. In addition to the three teams listed above, Heyman reports that the Miami Marlins, Toronto Blue Jays, and Milwaukee Brewers could be in on either guy. Benoit might be especially appealing to a team like the Marlins because of that second year of team control.
The Padres will be sellers, and their best chance to get value is likely these two relievers.