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Padres Pursuing Mike Moustakas

Padres Pursuing Mike Moustakas
Published On: Sun, Feb 10
May 8, 2018; Baltimore, MD, USA; Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas (8) reacts with third base coach Mike Jirschele (23) after hitting a home run in the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The Brewers areA reportedlyA the front-runners to sign free-agent third basemanA Mike Moustakas, but theya€™re facing competition from at least one team. The Padres, who haveA prioritizedA finding a third baseman this offseason, are a€œgoing aftera€ Moustakas, according toA AJ Cassavell of San Diego firstA a€œchecked ina€A on Moustakas earlier this winter, and Cassavella€™s report indicates the club is legitimately in pursuit of the 30-year-old at this late stage of the offseason.

This is the second straight drawn-out trip to the open market for Moustakas, who was shockingly available until last March before re-signing with the Royals for a $6.5MM guarantee. While Moustakas entered last winter with designs on landing a lucrative multiyear deal, that was before the free-agent process became unkind to even the most proven veterans available. This is the second year in a row a slew of familiar names are unemployed as spring training approaches, and even elite free agentsA Bryce HarperandA Manny MachadoA havena€™t found deals to their liking yet. With that in mind, ita€™s not surprising Moustakas is still searching for a contract. Some of the teams that could sign Moustakas are likely awaiting Machadoa€™s decision first, after all, and the former did turn in a 2018 showing which was almost identical to his 2017 performance.

Last year, in 152 games divided between the Royals and Brewers, Moustakas offered slightly above-average offensive numbers, hitting .251/.315/.459 (105 wRC+) with 28 home runs in 635 plate appearances. He paired that output with respectable defense at third, where he posted two DRS and a plus-one Ultimate Zone Rating, en route to 2.4 fWAR (he logged 2.1 fWAR in 598 PAs during the prior campaign).

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