A day after it was confirmed that Ian Desmond will not be returning to Washington next season, one of his first potential suitors has been revealed. According to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune, some in the Padres organization are fans of Desmond, who is considered a high-character player who had a down year in 2014.
San Diego has been looking for a shortstop for more than a year, with Jedd Gyorko, Alexi Amarista and Clint Barmes sharing time at the position despite the front office's efforts to upgrade the position. Desmond will be the best shortstop option available on the free-agent market this winter, with Stephen Drew, Asdrubal Cabrera and Jimmy Rollins as the other options for teams looking for help.
The Padres are not expected to re-sign Justin Upton and also have Ian Kennedy coming off the books, so they will have some financial flexibility to add a proven shortstop.
Desmond, 30, has spent his entire professional career in the Expos/Nationals organization, hitting .264/.312/.425 with 110 home runs in seven major-league seasons. He will be replaced in Washington by ex-Padres prospect Trea Turner, who was sent from San Diego to Washington in a major three-team deal last winter.