April In the Rear-View; Hot, Not, and Surprising Padres Prospects

Buddy Reed (Arizona Fall League 2018) - photo credit forloveofbaseball on Flickr

April is basically over and it’s still too early in the season to get entirely wrapped up in numbers, but some guys are putting up numbers that can’t be ignored – not always in a positive way. I’ll be going through every Padres MiLB team whose season has begun, looking at who has had a hot start, and who has had a slow start. Not only that, but I’ll shed some light on players not previously listed in prospect lists who have come out of nowhere to put up great numbers.


Fort Wayne Tincaps – Class A

Hot start:

Xavier Edwards (2019 #10 Padres Prospect)

Edwards is hitting .338, but has yet to hit his first home run in professional baseball. The speedy Edwards is also leading the team with 8 stolen bases after just 19 games. That is tempered by 5 times caught stealing, but his speed is and his ability to get on base makes him a very exciting prospect.

Ryan Weathers (2019 #12 Padres Prospect)

Weathers is leading the team in ERA (for pitchers with more than 1 inning) and leading the team in innings pitched. Pretty impressive combination. His 1.82 ERA is supported by a sub 1 WHIP and his poise on the mound is very impressive.

Slow start:

Luis Almanzar (2019 #36 Padres Prospect)

Still only 19, Almanzar has time to get things going, but he’s off to a poor start. On the bright side, his current .226 average is higher than his 2018 batting average and his 3 home runs are already more than he hit all of last year. So, while this is a slow start by most standards, there is a lot of silver-lining.

Surprise:

Agustin Ruiz

Agustin Ruiz is leading the team in batting average, on base percentage, total bases, OPS and slugging. Originally signed as a free agent in July of 2016, Ruiz has not previously posted gaudy numbers and is flying under the radar. Now 19-years-old, he could be in a position to be promoted soon.

 

Lake Elsinore Storm – Class A Advanced

Hot start:

Luis Campusano (2019 #23 Padres Prospect)

It’s 2019 but I’m still a sucker for high batting averages and Campusano is hitting a whopping .364 after his first 66 at-bats. His OPS is .929. While his high BABIP may indicate that he’s getting a little lucky, it’s important to note that his walk rate has practically doubles so it appears he is seeing the ball better and/or genuinely understanding the strike zone more.

MacKenzie Gore (2019 #2 Padres Prospect)

Gore has a 1.37 ERA with a minuscule 0.72 WHIP after 26.1 innings. Gore recently had a conversation with James E. Clark of East Village where he discussed his shortcomings in 2018 and how that has led to his 2019 success.

Slow Start:

Jeisson Rosario (2019 #20 Padres Prospect)

Rosario is hitting just .191 with only 3 extra base hits (3 doubles) and 2 steals after 23 games. He’s hitting the ball on the ground at a much higher rate than he had in previous seasons and his K% has gone from 16.1% in 21017 to 20.7% in 2018 to a new high of 29.9% in 2019.

Surprise:

Evan Miller

Both Elliot Ashbeck and Steven Wilson have a lower ERA after more innings than Miller, but Miller’s fantastic 0.49 WHIP is eye-grabbing to say the least. In 12.1 innings he has given up 3 hits and walked 3. The 23-year-old was drafted in the 22nd round of the 2016 draft so he has a long way to go before the word “prospect” is attached to his name, but this is clearly the right direction.

 

Amarillo Sod Poodles – Class AA

Hot start:

Jorge Ona (2019 #37 Padres Prospect)

Brad Zunica and Ona both have 5 home runs already, but Ona but that is where similarities end as Ona’s .367 batting average is 152 points higher than Zunica’s and his OBP is 122 points higher. Ona celebrated 4/20 with a 2 homer game and only has 1 error on the season.

Slow Start:

Buddy Reed (2019 #15 Padres Prospect)

Despite leading the team with 6 home runs and winning a player of the week award Reed is definitely off to a slow start. All of his home runs were in that one spectacular week and during that week he struck out 16 times and only hit .244. His batting average for the season is .195 and his strikeout rate is just under 26%.

Surprise:

Rodrigo Orozco

It is difficult to find an under-the-radar player having a standout season but the Sod Poodles so far in 2019, but Rodrigo Orozco, who was acquired for Socrates Brito is hitting .381 after his first 42 at-bats.


El Paso Chihuahuas - Class AAA

Hot Start:

Josh Naylor (2019 #13 Padres Prospect)

I'd talk about Ty France but he is with the San Diego Padres now. Naylor has 7 home runs and 22 RBI and has been on the field a ton, leading the team with 100 at bats. He's hitting a solid .300 and what's really good to see is that his strike out rate is only 12%.

Slow Start:

Logan Allen (2019 #11 Padres Prospect)

After nearly breaking camp with the big league team Logan is struggling in Triple-A. In his defense the PCL has always been hitter friendly and now they're using a ball that has a lot more life in it. But an ERA over 8 after 5 starts is not going to cut it.

Surprise:

Jacob Scavuzzo

Scavuzzo has hit 10 home runs in only 55 at bats, giving him one more than Ty France who reached 9 home runs in 78 at bats and more importantly, reached the big leagues. Scavuzzo has only one other extra base hit, and has a strike out rate of 32.8% so it's too early to get excited about the success indicated by his power surge.

Seth Mejias-Brean

Also worth noting, Mejias-Brean is hitting .341 after 85 at bats. That's good for 4th on the team (behind France, Jose Pirela and Alex Dickerson) if you only include players with 49 AB or more.

 




About Eric 21 Articles
Eric Killian is an Army Officer who covers the San Diego Padres for Prospects1500. He is a longtime baseball fan and collector whose collecting inspired him to learn all he can about up-and-coming players. He recently relocated from Sierra Vista, AZ., to El Paso, TX. Follow him on Twitter @USKillian

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