Yu Darvish might be on the move to San Diego soon.
The San Diego Padres announced their intentions to contend in 2021 in emphatic fashion by acquiring Blake Snell from the American League champion Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for a package headlined by flamethrowing prospect Luis Patino. The Padres have enough studs in the rotation to make a run in 2021 and beyond, but AJ Preller is going above and beyond to make the Padres formidable, as he has his eyes set on Chicago Cubs pitcher Yu Darvish.
Dennis Lin of The Athletic is reporting that even after the Snell trade, San Diego is looking to add another ace starter, actively pursuing Darvish.
Even after landing Blake Snell, the Padres are deep into talks to acquire Yu Darvish from the Cubs, sources tell @PJ_Mooney, @sahadevsharma and me. If the deal is completed, multiple players would head to Chicago.
— Dennis Lin (@dennistlin) December 28, 2020
Yu Darvish could turn the Padres into contenders instantly
Preller has some connections to Darvish, who broke into the MLB in dominant fashion with the Texas Rangers, as he was in the front office that helped secure Darvish’s signature. After a rough start to his time as a Cub, Darvish has become even more un-hittable than he was as a Ranger. in 2020, Darvish went 8-3 with a 2.01 ERA for the playoff-bound Cubs, finishing second in Cy Young voting.
In addition to Snell, San Diego can boast the likes of Dinelson Lamet and Chris Paddack in their rotation. With former No. 3 overall pick MacKenzie Gore also coming down the pipeline and former Indians ace Mike Clevinger scheduled to return from injury in 2022, adding Darvish could give the Padres the deepest rotation in all of baseball. With one of the deepest farm systems in the league, Preller has enough ammo to pull off this deal.
The Padres have plenty of firepower on offense given the three-headed monster of Fernando Tatis Jr., Manny Machado, and Eric Hosmer, but adding Darvish to a loaded rotation in a pitcher-friendly ballpark like Petco Park could make the Padres the first team in some time to truly challenge the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West.