The San Diego Padres surprised a lot of people by getting to the NLCS but some of their players won’t be returning in 2023.
The San Diego Padres got to the playoffs for the second time in three years for only the third time in their 50+ year franchise history.
This year, they got to the NLCS for only the third time in franchise history (1984, 1998) but they came up a bit short in the series. However, they wouldn’t have been there if not for some huge trade deadline moves that they made at the beginning of August.
Some of those players and a few others will be free agents or could leave the team via other means this offseason.
Here are three San Diego Padres who won’t be back in 2023 and where they’ll go.
3 San Diego Padres who won’t be back next season and where they’ll go
1) Padres first baseman Josh Bell – Houston Astros
Josh Bell was supposed to be one of the big trade acquisitions for the Padres at this year’s trade deadline. He should have been an All-Star with the Nationals after he hit .311/.390/.504 with 13 home runs and 52 RBI.
After he was traded to the Padres, though, Bell only hit .192/.316/.271 with three home runs and 14 RBI in 53 games. He did have a crucial game-tying RBI double in Game 5 of the NLCS but, overall, he didn’t live up to what the Padres hoped they were getting.
Bell, 30, is a free agent at the end of the season and there’s a team that is a perfect fit for him: the Houston Astros.
The Astros have shown that they are consistently the best AL team by records and in the postseason as they have been in the ALCS for each of the last six seasons. Their first baseman, Yuli Gurriel, is 38 and is a free agent after a bad season this year.
Bell is the better player at this point in their careers. The Astros also only have two left-handed hitters in their lineup. Bell, a switch-hitter, would be the only switch-hitter on their 26-man roster if he was on their team right now. Bell is also from Texas as he is from Dallas.