Dodgers Team News

Dodgers Rumors: Padres Sign RHP Michael Wacha, Best Free Agent Left

If the Dodgers were looking to add another starting pitcher on the free-agent market, the best one left is no longer available. Right-hander Michael Wacha signed a deal with the Padres, pending a physical.

Wacha was the top starter left on the market, but on MLB’s list of free agents sorted by WAR over the last two seasons, he was down at 21st, between Zack Greinke and Andrew Heaney. The top two free agent starters by that sorting are now Mike Minor (clearly worse than everyone currently in LA’s rotation) and Trevor Bauer (unlikely for reasons I can’t quite put my finger on). Everyone else after those two has combined for less than 1.0 WAR over the last two seasons.

Wacha is a solid addition for the Padres, who needed depth in their rotation more than a big star. He had a resurgence with Boston last year, posting a 3.32 ERA after combining for a 4.62 mark over his previous six seasons. His Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) only went from 4.37 in 2016-21 down to 4.14 last year, but if he can bump his strikeout rate back up while keeping his home run rate at its lower level, he could be sneaky good for San Diego.

Dodger fans will remember Wacha from the 2013 NLCS, which turned out to be the highlight of his career so far. Wacha threw 13.2 shutout innings against the Dodgers in that series to earn the NLCS MVP Award. He made his only All-Star team two years later, but it’s been all downhill since until last year.

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Jeff Snider

Jeff was born into a Dodgers family in Southern California and is now raising a Dodgers family of his own in Utah. During his previous career as an executive at a technology company, he began writing about baseball in his spare time. After leaving corporate America in 2014, he started doing it professionally. Jeff wrote and edited for Baseball Essential for years before joining Dodgers Nation. He's also the co-host of the Locked On Dodgers podcast, a daily podcast that brings the smart fan's perspective on our Boys in Blue. Jeff has a degree in English from Brigham Young University. Favorite Player: Clayton Kershaw Favorite Moment: Kirk Gibson's homer will always have a place, but Kershaw's homer on Opening Day 2013 might be the winner.


  1. The Padres continue to get better this offseason. It would not surprise me if their payroll was higher than LA’s. Meanwhile no Trea Turner, Tyler Anderson, and a couple of relievers. I think its a very fair statement that the Dodgers are not going to be better than last years 111 win team. I would love to be surprised this year, but I dont think we are going to win the division. Maybe Syndergaard and the rookies will surprise us.

    1. Rarely do “paper” teams win rings! 88 dodgers, last 3 SF rings….. Teams sucked! Posey bum and Ross . Snow and hippy n panda n posey there 1st WS. Orel, Tim and Tim, and Dave Anderson and a pinch hit won that series! Lol. Gibson was dodgers hr leader that year….. 21! Stubb’s 19 Hamilton 18, Sax 12 , Soscia 13, marshall 17, Shelby 16. Balanced though! Duncan had 8, Dempsey got hot vs Mets, it’s those hot underdog hitters. Consistency lineups. And red hot ace with not cold pen. And a lil luck. That’s not the Padres this year! Dodgers will be a a lil paper n a lil playoff team. Buelher’s coming back in 24, then we’re getting The Sho as well, and I’m assuming Urais will take a mondo 1 year deal to give LAD: Buehler, Sho, Urais, May, Maybe CK as a 6th or 5th starter, and pepiot n miller bring up that nasty ration in 24!

  2. Gonna take a lot more than that too take the division from LA. pretty sure by odds at least, as well as the youth here not going to have any stress 8n the playoffs , n just have fun n kick arse. Pretty sure LA’s gonna rip off 2 or 3 straight trophies! Or like 2 outa 3 r 4 years, or 3 rings in 5 6 years

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