The San Diego Padres have acquired All-Star catcher Derek Norris from the Oakland Athletics in four player deal, reports said on Thursday.
The Padres will receive young right-hander Seth Streich and an international signing slot from Oakland to accompany Norris, while the A's are getting two right-handers, Jesse Hahn and R.J. Alvarez from San Diego. The #117 international slot is worth $144,100, via Baseball America.
The Padres have been moving a lot of catching around lately, as they have dealt Yasmani Grandal and Rene Rivera, and netted themselves Tim Federowicz and Ryan Hanigan, in those deals, respectively. (Hanigan has since been dealt, however.) While the Padres have never had a true starting catcher, Norris fills that bid quite nicely, but not without a price.
The 25-year-old Norris is under contract through the 2018 season and is still pre-arbitration eligible, as he will not be arbitration eligible until 2016. Norris posted his best season offensively in 2014, which earned him a spot on the American League's All-Star team.
Norris slashed .270/.361/.403 with 10 home runs and 55 runs batted in over 442 plate appearances last season. He registered a 122 wRC+ and a 2.5 fWAR in his 127 games played. He may have been considered a just below-average fielder, but overall, Norris is a great addition to the Padres.
The Athletics have received two good prospects in Hahn and Alvarez for Norris. Hahn posted a 3.07 ERA in 73.1 innings pitched with San Diego this past season, seeing his first big league action since being drafted in the sixth round of the 2006 MLB Draft by the Rays. Alvarez already ranks as the Athletics' 18th-best propect (as ranked by MLB.com) and posted a 1.13 ERA in eight innings with San Diego last year.
The Padres have been busy this offseason, as they look to make the postseason for the first time since winning the National League West in back-to-back years in 2005 and 2006. General manager A.J. Preller has been busy to solidify his team to get them back. Although he had to pay a medium-sized price for him, the acquisition of Norris is definitely a big one for San Diego.