The New York Yankees went out in 2019 and made the biggest heist in baseball, acquiring arguably the best available pitcher in baseball in Gerrit Cole. The year before that, Cashman got a little known player by the name of DJ LeMahieu. Outside of that Yankee general manager, Brian Cashman has little to sing about. When the Yankees were making a run for the 2020 postseason, he did nothing by the trade deadline when the Yankees obviously needed pitching help. This offseason, with the Yankee’s priority being resigning DJ LeMahieu, Cashman got that deal down on the cheap. He also signed pitcher Corey Kluber to a one year deal but has done little else.
The San Diego Padres and their general manager A. J. Preller has been the biggest movers and shakers in baseball for the last two years. Last year by the trade deadline, they signed nearly a whole team of players. Major ones included Mike Clevinger and Greg Allen from Cleveland; Austin Nola, Austin Adams, Dan Altavilla, and Taylor Williams from the Mariners; Jason Castro from the Angels; Mitch Moreland from the Red Sox; and Trevor Rosenthal from the Royals. Thatâ€™s four relief pitchers, two catchers, one outfielder, first baseman, and starting pitcher apiece. If you’re not doing the math, that’s 26 players to the Yankees zero players.
This year the Padres have become a true contender for the Los Angeles Dodgers, making more headline trades than any other baseball team. First, they traded for the Tampa Bay Rays ace Blake Snell to head up their pitching rotation with Clevinger out for the 2021 season. Next, they traded for the Cubs co ace Yu Darvish. But the Padres weren’t done; they just traded for Joe Musgrove of the Pirates. These trades have given them one of the best starting trios in baseball, plus they will have Clevinger back next season.
In both of these years, the San Diego Padres spent little money but basically traded away their one deep farm system. That pantry is now pretty bare, but the Padres are going for their first World Series, a Championship they have never won.
The San Diego Padres were founded in 1969. Since then, they have had 15 winning seasons. They have won 5 NL West Division titles and two NL pennants. They went to the World Series twice in 1984 and again in 1998 but came away winless. The Padres have been so bad at times that they had become the laughing stock of the National League. Not the case anymore. In 2019 they went 70-92. In 2020 they were 37-22 and came second in the West only to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The fact is that the Padres were a better team last year than the New York Yankees; they were 33-27. General manager A. J. Preller has certainly done his job improving the club big time and turning them into a true contender in the upcoming season. Yet the Yankees have yet to make moves that will improve the team from last year. Although the Yankees have won more World Championships (27) than any other baseball team, they haven’t been World Champions since 2009. That team was built by Gene “Stick” Michael, not Brian Cashman.