For several days, Jake Goebbert did his best to ignore the rumors that he could be traded.
On Wednesday, the former Hampshire baseball standout met with Oakland A's Triple-A manager Steve Scarsone, who informed Goebbert that a trade that would have sent him to the San Diego Padres Triple-A team in El Paso, Texas, and that had been the source of those rumors, had fallen through.
Thursday morning, the news changed again.
Goebbert was traded for infielder/outfielder Kyle Blanks and will report to El Paso on Friday after hitting .257 with six home runs and 25 RBIs in 31 games this season in Sacramento.
"It was kind of a surprise, but it's something I'm very excited about," Goebbert said in a phone interview Thursday afternoon. "It's a good opportunity – a fresh start again – and opportunity is really all you can ask for."
Goebbert spoke to Padres officials Thursday morning and although it's too early what the expectations with his new club will be, he hopes to keep making a push for a Major League call-up.
The trade, which also included the Padres receiving a player to be named later and cash considerations, gives Goebbert another chance in the National League. Goebbert was a 13th-round draft pick of the Houston Astros in 2009. Last season was Goebbert's first season with the A's organization after being traded for pitcher Travis Blackley on April 4, 2013. Goebbert has hit .278 with 59 home runs and 343 RBIs in the minors and has spent parts of four seasons in Triple-A.
Goebbert said the Padres indicated they have had their eye on him for a couple of years. He spent Thursday afternoon packing his things at the ballpark and at his apartment, prepared to take what he hopes is another step closer to the major leagues. He said the timing for making the switch back to the National League couldn't be better.
"The Padres are working on getting better every day just like all of us," he said. "I feel like anybody in that organization has an opportunity (to be called up) and to be part of it now is a great thing for me. I'm just looking forward to putting my skills to work and do the best that I can."