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Fernando Tatis, JR. Named Opening Day SS For San Diego

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I wrote a blog yesterday about how MLB is looking a LOT better now than it did 6 years ago with reference to a potential strike after the 2021 season.  Well this move by Preller is going to held in the highest light possible by the MLBPA because San Diego could have EASILY held Tatis, Jr. down and had control of him for 7 years opposed to 6.  I do think it’s kind of stupid of Preller and that the Padres are still a year away, but to each their own.  With this move and the White Sox pre-service clock extension of Eloy, there are a lot of precedents being reset that will look good in Tony Clark’s eyes in 2 years.  Now the Reds have to should consider doing the same with Nick Senzel.

Anyways, back to Tatis, Jr.  Isn’t going to be AWESOME as a White Sox fan seeing him and Machado on the left side of the infield for San Diego for at least the next 6 years?  I mean it only should theoretically be the exact White Sox left side this year.

Shoulda/woulda/coulda though.  The funny thing is is that I’m not near as salty about Tatis as I am about how the Machado situation concluded.  Yeah, I do think Machado will turn into a fat dog that needs to be taken behind the woodshed sooner than later, but it was how bad the organization looked as that situation unfolded that pissed me off the most.  Not actually losing out on Machado.

But Tatis… He’s different.  He was a little pip squeak 16 year old at the time.  I mean, look at him:

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And a 16 year old pipsqueak that had yet to take a professional at bat at any level for the White Sox.  And one that signed for a measly $700,000 out of the Dominican.  NOBODY – nobody other than White Sox international scouting director Marco Paddy that is – thought he was going to be what he’s become.  MLB Pipeline had him the 30th ranked international prospect in his class, Baseball America 27th, and so on.

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Dennis Lin of The Athletic had a great oral history of how the trade went down.  Now, it obviously started with this:

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Look at the replies to that tweet.  Everyone was like “SIGN ME UP RIGHT NOW” in wanting to trade Tatis for Shields.

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What I’m getting at is this:  Nobody on the planet knew who the fuck Tatis was when the Sox traded him.  Good on them for identifying and paying him, but San Diego hit a complete lottery ticket.  Totally SHIT luck for the White Sox in this instance.

Now I can excuse trading Tatis.  What I cannot excuse is trading him for JAMES SHIELDS.  The scouts that recommended Shields and the 3 years, $60MM he was owed fucked up beyond belief.  By the time he got to Chicago, his arm was fried and it didn’t take years of sitting with a radar gun, can of grizzly wintergreen or and bucket hat behind home plate to realize that.  It took watching him top out at 90MPH and get shit on by Tolo:

Whichever group – and I emphasize group, not just one singular person – identified a 34 year old former power pitcher with about a decade straight of 200 IP seasons under his belt on a $20mm AAV contract that had seen a MASSIVE decline in production over the last year plus and said “yep, this is a go for it move” should not be scouting anymore.  That’s harsh, but that’s a fucking fact.

Now I will say this as well – I think there are stretches that Tatis struggles for this year similar to Moncada.  There is a LOT of swing and miss in his swing.  He arm bars and comes around the baseball a little bit, which will cause him to struggle with Big League fastballs a bit, but his hands are lightning fast and his overall talent is supreme.  He’ll learn to control his bat better with more experience.