In addition to aggressive amateur acquisitions, the Padres have bolstered their enviably deep farm system through a series of trades that sent soon-to-be free agents out in exchange for prospect packages. San Diego acquired Olivares in one such trade with the Blue Jays last year, parting with Yangervis Solarte (3B, Blue Jays) in the process. Toronto signed Olivares as a skinny 18 year old for just $1,000 as a Venezuelan amateur.
Now 22, Oliveras is still thin, but he’s an above-average athlete with a good feel to hit. He is splitting time between center and right this year given the presence of Buddy Reed (LF, Padres), but he shows enough outfield range and arm to handle any outfield spot. Centerfield is his best bet to get everyday playing time given a lack of power, though his hit tool and speed both profile there just fine. His contact and on-base ability are future plus, and he often works himself deep into hitters counts with an understanding of the strike zone. While he’s unlikely to develop over-the-fence power, he has gap pop both ways and shows above-average instincts on the bases. The ceiling is that of a lesser regular in centerfield, able to contribute an advanced hit tool and defensive value. That’s a huge win for two years of a 30-year-0ld infielder for the rebuilding Padres.