According to Chris Cotillo of SB Nation Daily Dash, the San Diego Padres are reportedly targeting Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus as a potential trade piece.
It is no secret that Andrus has been on a steady decline for the last four seasons, but is he still valuable enough for San Diego to dip into their valuable, limited resources (prospects) in an effort to trade for him? Andrus is coming off a season in which he posted a slash line of .258/.309/.357 with a .667 OPS. His fielding was average, as his UZR/150 was exactly 0.0 and his defensive runs saved was -1.
Andrus would be an upgrade over the shortstop production that the Padres got last season (.215/.266/.313; 579 OPS; UZR/150 -6.4 with -28 defensive runs saved) but at what cost? Is it possible that the Padres and Rangers could swap bad contract for bad contract? Andrus is to make $15.2 million this season and $104 million over the next seven seasons. Is it possible that maybe Matt Kemp or James Shields could be involved? Shields is set to make $21 million this season and $62 million over the next three years and Kemp is set to make $21.5 million this season and $86 million over the next four seasons. Both Kemp and Shields are pieces the Padres took on last winter before watching their 2015 season fall flat.
A deal involving Kemp, Shields, and Andrus would make the most sense, in terms of a bad contract swapfest. If San Diego GM A.J. Preller has trading prospects in mind for an overpriced, declining shortstop, he might as well go out and sign Ian Desmond for his asking price while holding on to his most valuable resources in the farm system.