Could Mariners be eventual trade match for Padres’ Fernando Tatís Jr?

Mar 19, 2023, 11:54 AM
Mariners Padres Fernando Tatís Jr....
Fernando Tatís Jr. of the San Diego Padres scores in a May 21, 2021 game against the Mariners. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
(Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

One potential big storyline for the 2023 MLB season will be how young Padres star Fernando Tatís Jr. does not only in his first season back from injury and suspension, but also at a new position. And according to at least one baseball insider, the Mariners might figure into that storyline.

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Longtime MLB Network host Greg Amsinger joined Seattle Sports’ Wyman and Bob this week, and he said that he sees potential for a blockbuster trade between the Mariners and Padres down the line based on one position he sees as a question mark for Seattle.

“J.P. Crawford, it’s a make or break year – for me – for him at shortstop because there are options out there,” Amsinger said (listen in the podcast here or in the player below).

That’s just one of his reasons for thinking the Mariners and Padres might eventually start talking about the 24-year-old Tatís, a two-time Silver Slugger who came up as a shortstop but is penciled in to play the outfield once he returns in late April following the conclusion of his 80-game suspension due to a positive test for a banned substance. There’s also the fact that the teams’ front offices are known for making big trades, including with each other.

“I threw this out there on MLB Network: What’s the next colossal, monster trade?” Amsinger said. “So just for fun, I was thinking to the two rock-star GMs who love to make all the trades and deals, and that’s A.J. Preller of the Padres and (president of baseball operations) Jerry Dipoto of the Mariners.”

Then there’s the idea that Tatís may not be satisfied playing a new position.

“I do not think Fernando Tatís Jr. is going to be a happy camper playing right field,” Amsinger said. “He’s just not – I don’t think he will be. He’s saying all the right things right now, but he wants to a shortstop. He thinks he’s the best shortstop that’s ever been born, he’s that confident of a guy.”

Finally, there’s the fit. According to Amsinger, Seattle has something the Padres might want after giving up a huge haul to the Washington Nationals in a trade for superstar outfielder Juan Soto last season.

“The one thing the Mariners have: a lot of young starting pitching depth and talent in the farm system. So if the Mariners wanted to pull off a mega deal, they’ve got the pieces to go do it to address the shortstop position,” he said. “… If A.J. Preller is looking for what he doesn’t have, which is young starting pitching depth because he gave it all away to get Juan Soto, there’s a match, man. There’s a match. And Tatís to the Mariners to be the wingman to Julio Rodríguez, and Jarred Kelenic, Teoscar Hernández – that would be massive. You’re gonna have to trade a lot of young pitching to San Diego, which they’re inevitably going to need – but I’m getting ahead of it. I’m just saying it’s a make or break year for J.P. Crawford.”

How much validity is there to Amsinger’s thoughts, especially considering the massive 14-year, $340 million contract the Padres signed Tatís to before last season? Mariners insider Shannon Drayer of Seattle Sports shared her insight with Brock and Salk after hearing Amsinger’s comments. Listen to what she had to say in the podcast at this link or in the video below.

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