San Diego Padres pitcher Ha-Sung Kim, 28, will not be traded next year.
MLB Traderumors reported on June 26 (KST), “With an opening day payroll of just under $249 million and a star-studded roster, it’s clear that San Diego expected to win a championship in 2023. Instead, the Padres are 77-80 and are fighting for an arithmetic postseason berth. In many ways, the Padres’ season has been an anomaly, including the 10th-best run differential in the majors (+91), a 7-22 record in one-run games, and an inexplicable 0-12 record in extra innings.”
The Padres invested heavily last winter, signing Zander Bogaerts to an 11-year, $280 million contract, Darvish Yu to a six-year, $108 million contract, and Manny Machado to an 11-year, $350 million extension. But what they got back was a 77-80 record and fourth place in the National League West. The race for the division title ended early with the Dodgers winning, and the Padres are in seventh place in the National League wild card race, just one game out of elimination.
Despite the disappointment, San Diego is unlikely to cut back on its investment next year. The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the team will cut its payroll next season to avoid the luxury tax threshold, but will maintain a payroll of about $200 million.
San Diego had a team payroll of about $253.29 million this season, according to ESPN. To reduce the payroll to $200 million, the team would need to save $50 million.
According to MLB Trade Rumors, “San Diego has a committed payroll of approximately $128.5 million in 2024. However, this excludes salary-adjusted players, including Juan Soto, who made $23 million this year. Whether to trade Soto, who is due for a big raise, or let him play one more season and hit free agency is a big decision facing San Diego. Josh Hader and Blake Snell, who will be free agents, will not remain with the team, it is questionable whether Nick Martinez and Michael Wakar will be retained, and Seth Lugo is likely to hit the market without exercising his $7.5 million player option.”토토사이트
While a number of key players are likely to leave the organization, there is a good chance that key players, including Kim, will remain with the team next year. “The changes haven’t changed San Diego’s overall direction or its desire to quickly return to postseason contention in 2024,” the outlet said. Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr, Bogut, Darvish, Kim Ha-Sung, Joe Musgrove and other key players don’t appear to be in danger of being traded. All of their big contracts are well within the $200 million range.”
Kim, who signed a four-year, $28 million contract with San Diego in 2020, is in his third season. In 147 games, he is batting .264 (136-for-516) with 17 home runs, 58 RBIs, 83 runs scored, 36 doubles, and a .761 OPS, making him one of San Diego’s most valuable players. He will be a free agent after next season.
It will be interesting to see if he stays with the Padres before he becomes a free agent, or if he decides to hit the free agent market and join another team.