The San Diego Padres internally discussed the possibility of asking starting shortstop Xander Bogaerts to move to the right side of the infield, according to Dennis Lin of The Athletic.
The idea was originally floated while the Padres were negotiating with Bogaerts before signing the four-time All-Star to an 11-year, $280-million deal last offseason.
“Is it five years down the road? It is 10 years down the road? Is it three years down the road?” Padres president of baseball operations A.J. Preller said last December. “It’s competition, and I think our guys understand that. We’ve got a lot of talented players, and I think we’ll do what’s best for our team and have the conversation with the players as we go through it, but he’ll start the year at shortstop.”
Bogaerts, who’s made 1,325 starts at short over his 11-year career and hasn’t played a different position since 2014, collected three outs above average but minus-four defensive runs saved this season. He ranked in the 82nd percentile in outs above average but in the 24th percentile for arm strength, according to Baseball Savant.
The 31-year-old also finished 18th among shortstops in defensive rating in 2023, per FanGraphs.
Ha-Seong Kim, who’s nominated for two Gold Gloves, is an option to replace Bogaerts at short.