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The Padres have traded star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez to the Boston Red Sox, according to various sports media. ESPN broke the story this morning (Dec. 4) but as of 10:26 a.m. is still quoting "sources" on the deal. The Union-Tribune is closer to saying the deal is a fait accompli, and columnist Tim Sullivan had said this morning that such a deal was well nigh inevitable. The Padres will get pitcher Casey Kelly, 21-year old first baseman Anthony Rizzo and 19-year-old outfielder Raymond Fuentes.

Gonzalez's contract goes through next year, but he was expected to be traded because the team can't possibly pay the $22 million to $25 million a season that some experts thinks he can command. He led the majors with a .407 average with runners in scoring position and had a hand in 23.6% of Padres runs, according to the U-T. In five seasons, he hit 161 home runs.

Since Gonzalez was the team's major draw, the deal will clearly affect the Padres's bottom line. Gonzalez has lived on both sides of the border and graduated from Eastlake High in Chula Vista, according to the U-T. "Gonzalez is the Padres's most popular player with great crossover appeal to the team's Mexican-American market," says ESPN. The Padres had a payroll of less than $38 million last year, second-lowest in the majors, according to the U-T. The team has already lost pitcher Jon Garland, shortstop Miguel Tejada and catcher Yorvit Torrealba, won't resign outfielders Scott Hairston and Tony Gwynn Jr. and refused to pick up the $8.5 million option on pitcher Chris Young. One Colorado Rockies website is exulting that the Padres have already given up on 2011, although the team surprised everybody by staying in this year's race until the final day.

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Comments

Visduh Dec. 4, 2010 @ 1:27 p.m.

Will all this activity guarantee that the Padres will REALLY disappoint the fans in 2011? Let some people more knowledgeable than I comment on that. And if it does mean a poorer season than the one just past, what will that do to the already-stinky attendance at the ballpark?

The boondoggle that is Petco Park is looking worse all the time.

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Don Bauder Dec. 4, 2010 @ 1:41 p.m.

You took the words right out of my mouth. As I pointed out several times last season, the Padres attendance was extremely bad while the team was in first place most of the season. Now what will happen with Gonzalez gone, as well as some good pitcher and position players? Petco has high prices, poor parking, generally poor logistics, along with other disadvantages. And all those condos and hotels that were supposed to produce tax receipts to help pay for the ballpark are darned near empty. Best, Don Bauder

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a2zresource Dec. 4, 2010 @ 4:48 p.m.

Now if we can just turn Petco Park into a convertible NFL venue...

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Don Bauder Dec. 4, 2010 @ 6:26 p.m.

Then the Chargers, while winning, could have lousy attendance like the Padres. Best, Don Bauder

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MURPHYJUNK Dec. 5, 2010 @ 9:55 a.m.

maybe the league needs another strike just to gauge just how loyal ( not) the fans really are.

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Don Bauder Dec. 5, 2010 @ 1:37 p.m.

Well, at least there may be a lockout or strike in pro football in 2011. I haven't heard of such a threat in baseball. Best, Don Bauder

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paul Dec. 9, 2010 @ 12:46 a.m.

Just to point out the obvious: In 1996 the Padres payroll was $33.3 million and the Yankees payroll was $61.5 million. In 2010 the Padres payroll was $38.2 million and the Yankees payroll was $206.7 million.

Somehow, the Padres still felt the need to jettison 4 of their top 5 paid players and cut their payroll by 1/3 to around $26 million.

Thank god we built Petco so Moores could keep up with the salaries needed to compete. 12 years ago in 1998 Moores could only afford a $53 million dollar payroll leading up to the vote for a new stadium, but now with the new stadium the payroll has skyrocketed to .... half that?

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Don Bauder Dec. 9, 2010 @ 3:56 p.m.

Petco attendance is down to the levels of the final years at the Q, when the team was winning only about 66 games a year. Yes, San Diego got snookered on that Petco deal. Moores said the team could not compete at Qualcomm. If the people would toss in $300 million, he could boost the payroll. He is said to have made more than $700 million on real estate deals in the ballpark district, along with $600 million by dumping stock in Peregrine before the collapse. (Some of that went into the ballpark.) Then he rode off to Texas to be with his new paramour. New Padres owners are saying the payroll will be over $40 million in the coming season. Big Whoop. Best, Don Bauder

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