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Does Adding Nelson Cruz Make The Padres Lineup Even Better?

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The San Diego Padres added to their already potent lineup, 42 year old Free agent, Nelson Cruz, who signed a one year, $1 Million deal on Wednesday, pending the passing of his physical.

The ageless Cruz will be entering his 18th season in the majors. He made his debut in 2005, and four years later in 2009, he became a star by hitting 33 home runs through 128 games. Since then he has had an amazing career totaling 453 home runs and 1302 RBIs through 2006 games.

In 2022, he hit 10 home runs, drove in 64 runs through 124 games. The normal decline of a player in his late 30s to early 40’s is normal, but even the other ageless wonder in Albert Pujols, hit 24 home runs in 2022 at the age of 42. So for Cruz, who could be the primary right handed DH for the Padres, does has the ability to put up some big numbers as well.

With the return to the everyday lineup of Fernando Tatis Jr. the Padres lineup will already put a fear into the minds of opposing pitchers  as each will have to tread lightly to even come away with the victory, and now with Cruz, he adds that much more to the drama.  This is something that any baseball fan would love to see on an everyday basis with their ball club.

Cruz’s numbers were less that expected in 2022, but he is still a formidable bat from the right side of the plate, and any power from that position will be an added plus to this already stacked lineup.

Projected 2023 Lineup

Ha-seong Kim – 2B
Juan Soto – OF
Fernando Tatis Jr.– OF
Manny Machado – 3B
Xander Bogaerts – SS
Jake Cronenworth – 1B
Matt Carpenter / Nelson Cruz – DH
Austin Nola – C
Trent Grisham – OF

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David is the Co-Founder and Executive Editor of Legends On Deck®, as well as a Co-Host on Legends On Deck Podcast. David was a Senior Editor for, and Contributor for that spanned from 2010 to 2014. David made his MLB Debut as a writer in June 2014, while covering the NY Mets at Citi Field, for David also managed his Cape Coral 16U Rec Ball team for the past two seasons and on May 13, 2024 they won their league Championship. On May 15th, David started the first ever Legends on Deck 16U Travel Baseball team in SWFL. David's passion is teaching the game he loves to the future Legends of Tomorrow as well as making available a website that people can have fun sharing and reading. David is also passionate about his career as a Mortgage Loan Officer which allows him to help many families reach their dreams of owning a home. Connect with David via his Social Media pages as he loves to chat all about baseball.

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