With the trade deadline rapidly approaching, the Arizona Diamondbacks have reached a deal to send Ian Kennedy to the San Diego Padres for reliever Joe Thatcher. The D-Backs are also expected to receive a couple of minor league players in the deal as well.
Kennedy is currently in the midst of a bad season, as he’s 3-8 with a 5.23 ERA to date. Thatcher on the other hand, is 3-1 with a 2.10 ERA in 50 games for San Diego this season.
The Diamondbacks have had bullpen trouble all season, so it made sense for them to send the struggling Kennedy to the Padres for help. Arizona ranks second in all of baseball for blown saves and simply can’t afford to let close games get away down the stretch. Thatcher has been solid throughout his seven-year career (all with San Diego), boasting a 3.18 ERA while recording 210 strikeouts in 198.1 innings of work.
Arizona is currently three and a half games back in the NL West, while the Padres aren’t out of things yet at nine games back.
Overall, this seems to be a win-win deal for both sides. Kennedy was no longer the 21-game winner that he was in 2011 and the Diamondbacks simply had to get help for their bullpen. Starting pitching is the key come October, but a good bullpen is almost equally important.
San Diego gets a bit of a project in Kennedy, but there’s still reason to believe he could turn his career back around.
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