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Yu Darvish trade solidifies his status as an elite fantasy baseball pitcher

Yu Darvish has quietly been one of baseball's best pitchers over the past 18 months. AP Photo/Orlin Wagner

In the span of 24 hours, the San Diego Padres have rebuilt a rotation that contributed only 15 of their 52 postseason innings in 2020, not to mention lost ace and midseason acquisition Mike Clevinger to Tommy John surgery in mid-November.

Hours after acquiring Blake Snell from the Tampa Bay Rays, the Padres on Monday agreed to a trade with the Chicago Cubs for Yu Darvish, sending starting pitcher Zach Davies and four prospects, none of which were widely considered top-five prospects in the Padres' system, to the Cubs in exchange for Darvish and catcher Victor Caratini. In short work, that gave the Padres one of the game's strongest rotations, with Darvish and Snell joined by Dinelson Lamet, Chris Paddack and potentially the game's top prospects in MacKenzie Gore for 2021, with Clevinger probably rejoining that mix for 2022.