The journey away from the Boston Red Sox remains, let’s say, adventurous for Xander Bogaerts.

The once-franchise shortstop signed with the San Diego Padres on a massive 11-year, $280 million free-agent deal following the 2022 season. That closed the Red Sox chapter of Bogaerts’ career, which featured two World Series titles, four All-Star selections and two Silver Slugger honors.

Bogaerts had a decent debut season in San Diego, hitting .285 with a .790 OPS for the Padres in 2023. That offseason created a new picture for Bogaerts with his new team. San Diego opted to prioritize the defense of Ha-Seong Kim as the everyday shortstop. As a result, the Padres moved Bogaerts to second base, which he certainly did not play with the Red Sox regularly.

Bogaerts hasn’t been himself to start 2024, tallying -3 defensive runs saved while hitting .217 with a .571 OPS. In assessing the middle infield, the Padres made an impact move on Friday night, trading for former NL batting champion and Miami Marlins second baseman Luis Arraez.

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So, where does that leave Bogaerts if Arraez takes over at second base?

Manny Machado is the Padres’ current designated hitter, though he could move back to third base, where Tyler Wade has not made a major impact offensively.

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The deal for Bogaerts and the Padres just hasn’t seemed to click for a franchise that’s made some puzzling moves about its direction. In order to shed eventual payroll, San Diego dealt Juan Soto to the New York Yankees early in the offseason. Then, the Padres decided they wanted to buy and made a deal to go get frontline starter Dylan Cease from the Chicago White Sox. Bogaerts and the Padres remain talented, though their potential and direction are worth another conversation.

Bogaerts’ role with San Diego will surely be a storyline when he makes his Fenway Park homecoming when the Red Sox host the Padres for a three-game series that begins on June 28.

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Featured image via Orlando Ramirez/USA TODAY Sports Images