It seems pretty clear at this point that the rest of Josh Hader’s days on the Brewers will be spent with everyone asking when Josh Hader’s days on the Brewers will end.
This week, more (unfounded) trade rumors began to pop up again, with San Diego Padres fans basically pumping up a Hader-to-San Diego rumor so much online it actually got reported on.
It’s simply not true, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. While the Padres and Brewers have had some talks about Hader (for several years, according to Rosenthal), it feels more like the “check in on the current price” type of talks and not actual trade negotiations.
The Padres and Brewers have discussed Hader intermittently over the past few years, but the two sides do not currently line up for a trade, sources say. The Brewers want affordable, controllable major-league pieces for Hader. Infielder Jake Cronenworth and left-handed reliever Tim Hill are among those who fit that description, and the Padres want to keep such players.
If there’s any value coming out of the latest round of rumors, it’s that we got more confirmation on what it would take for the Brewers to move Hader. Outside of the repors earlier this winter that the asking price was still (rightfully) absurdly high, Rosenthal says the Brewers want multiple Major League-ready prospects or current Major League pieces that have almost all of their years of control in tact.
Rosenthal mentioned Jake Cronenworth would fit that bill, but that should not be taken as a “Brewers asked for Jake Cronenworth and more for Hader.” Based on those demands, though, San Diego does seem like one of the few teams that a. have a potential opening at the back end of the bullpen (old friend Drew Pomeranz is probably the most logical choic to get the last three outs for the Friars as of now, and he’d likely be better suited in a role more like, well, Josh Hader’s best role) and b. have the number and quality of young players the Brewers would want.
It’s pretty clear based on the demands that the Brewers don’t see trading Hader as a sign they’re rebuilding, either — more like dealing from an area of strength to improve other areas of the team while staying competitive (or even improving).
Still, nothing is imminent, and what’s been the truth for the last year or two remains the truth — the Brewers do not have to trade Josh Hader anytime soon.