ATLANTA -- Having never been the point man for a team's efforts leading up to Thursday's 1 p.m. PT non-waiver Trade Deadline, A.J. Hinch might not be the right guy to ask whether his approach is the best way to conduct business.
All the Padres' assistant general manager knows -- with two notable trades already under his belt -- is what has worked for him and the organization.
"You've got to be an active participant if you expect to be engaged in trade talks," Hinch said. "And in return, we found some trade partners who have been equally aggressive."
With three days to go before the Trade Deadline, the Padres have already moved the two major pieces on the roster: All-Star closer Huston Street to the Angels and then third baseman Chase Headley to the Yankees in deals that were completed in a dizzying five-day span.
That means that Thursday could come and go with little fanfare for the Padres, who a year ago on that day were busy scrambling, trying to add starting pitcher Ian Kennedy from the D-backs.
So how does Hinch account for the early activity?
"I think we have operated in a way where we've set a price that's been high, and you never know when that will be achieved," Hinch said. "We've been one of the more active teams early. Maybe it's because of the situation we're in and the talent we have in the right time of their career -- Huston had an option [for 2015] left, and Chase was going to be a free agent."
Hinch is currently overseeing the day-to-day operation of the big league club and is the point man for all trade talks, and he has done so since the team dismissed general manager Josh Byrnes on June 22.
San Diego could still see some action between now and Thursday. Outfielder Chris Denorfia has been getting a lot of recent interest from teams looking for an extra outfielder who has traditionally hit left-handed pitching well. Teams are still taking runs at reliever Joaquin Benoit and Kennedy, both of whom are under team control through 2015 and don't figure to be on the move.
If the Padres do choose to move either one, they could potentially land a decent return of prospects. As from the deals that have been made to this point, it appears teams are willing to mortgage the future to win now. Might San Diego, a club that is always on the hunt for offense, get an offer it can't refuse?
One thing has been made clear to Hinch through this process leading to the Trade Deadline: The Padres, for all their struggles this season, have commodities that other teams covet.
"What's been notable through all this is that there's been several teams that like a lot of our players," Hinch said. "One thing I've been happy with is to hear the positive feedback on the group we have here, from the two who have been traded and the guys who might be traded and ones we have no interest in trading."