Most of the rumors over the last 24 hours have surrounded Jon Lester. But it doesn’t look like the Pittsburgh Pirates are limiting their pitching search to just the Red Sox lefty. Ken Rosenthal reports that the Pirates are one of the teams in on Padres’ starting pitcher Ian Kennedy.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) July 30, 2014
Rosenthal says that Kennedy isn’t certain to be moved. This isn’t the first time that the Pirates have been connected to Kennedy. They scouted him a few weeks ago. The Padres haven’t committed to dealing him, even after dealing Huston Street and a few other players.
Kennedy is making $6.1 M this year, and is putting up some strong numbers on the mound. He had a down year last year, but seems to be back on track, with a 3.66 ERA in 135.1 innings, along with a 9.5 K/9 and a 2.8 BB/9. I project his trade value to be $13.6 M, using the $9.5 M/WAR figure from the Jeff Samardzija trade. That’s not too far off the trade value for Lester. Kennedy wouldn’t be as good as Lester, but you’d be getting him for one extra year, rather than just two months. Lester would be the bigger upgrade in 2014, but Kennedy would provide a nice upgrade for the 2015 season.
The Padres have been saying they need to be overwhelmed to deal Kennedy.