The Los Angeles Dodgers have traded first baseman/outfielder Matt Beaty to the San Diego Padres in exchange for minor-league pitcher/infielder River Ryan, the teams announced Monday. Beaty had previously been designated for assignment by the Dodgers, so he was either going to be traded, released or sent to the minors.
Beaty, 28, hit .270/.363/.402 (107 OPS+) with four doubles, a triple, seven homers, 40 RBI, 35 runs, two steals and 0.1 WAR in 234 plate appearances last season for the Dodgers. He was a third baseman in college, but has recently only played first and the two corner outfield spots in the majors.
It’s unclear exactly how Beaty fits in the Padres’ everyday plans, but there are spots where he can take hold. Right-handed swinging Luke Voit is likely the everyday DH, but Beaty is left-handed and could grab some at-bats there. Right-handed swinging Wil Myers is also penciled in at right field. Over in left field, it looks like some combination of Jurickson Profar (a switch hitter) and Beaty could be a possibility.
There’s also the chance first baseman Eric Hosmer is traded. He’s been rumored to be on the trading block. Hosmer is due $21 million this season and then $13 million per season from 2023-25. Given his production, he isn’t heavily sought after in the trade market, but the Padres could attach him to a touted prospect or two and that’s where the rumors have concentrated.
For now, though, expect Beaty to start multiple times a week for the Padres while moving between the corner outfield spots, DH and first. When he doesn’t start, he’ll be an important bench bat.
As for the return, Ryan, 23, was a two-way player for UNC Pembroke before being drafted in the 11th round last year. He got 12 games of action in the Arizona Complex League last year, hitting .308/.349/.436.