Michel Baez (Prospect Ranking: 7)
Spring Stats: 1-0, 6 IP, 2 BB, 5 K, 1.50 ERA
Like Morejon, Baez is still ranked in the Top 10 by MLB Pipeline. Unlike his Cuban counterpart, Baez tossed 29.2 innings for a 3.03 ERA. Baez pitched in 24 games, with only one counting as a start.
Come Spring, San Diego wanted to stretch the 24-year-old out as a starter by having him throw more innings. In three total games, Baez pitched six innings and allowed just one run while mostly pitching two innings at a time.
While it was never a sure thing that Baez was going to be a starter, he has promise as a late-inning relief specialist. He looked sharp in the role last year with a fastball that averaged 96 MPH. The pitch was a valuable weapon in Spring Training, and it will serve him well in the future.
Gabriel Arias (Prospect Ranking: 8)
Spring Stats: .308/.438/.308, RBI, 3 R, SB
At just 20 years old, Arias has been aggressively pushed by the Padres to play against older competition. That aggressiveness paid off as he surged to a .809 OPS with High-A Lake Elsinore while hitting a career-high 17 home runs.
Naturally, San Diego pushed Arias off the ledge by inviting him to Major League camp to play with the big boys and, instead of falling flat on his face, Arias held his own against the older competition.
The numbers aren’t exactly eye-opening (he hit four singles in 13 at-bats), but Arias showed skills with his glove alongside a patient eye at the plate (three walks against four strikeouts).
Had it not been for Fernando Tatis Jr. cementing himself at shortstop and CJ Abrams being selected in the first round of the 2019 MLB Draft, Arias’ path to the big leagues would’ve been much clearer.
He still possesses all the tools to make it as a major league shortstop, but the road has only gotten tougher for a man who has already been dealt a tight hand.
Owen Miller (Prospect Ranking: 11)
Spring Stats: .143/.333/.143, 2 RBI
Miller came into camp as a sleeper pick to make the roster as a utility infielder. His .290/.355/.430 batting line in Double-A proved that the 23-year-old could hit anywhere he plays.
However, he struggled once he had to face major league pitching. In only nine at-bats, Miller only picked up a single hit at the plate.
The former third-round pick was always going to be behind Greg Garcia and Jurickson Profar on the pecking order, and he needed a strong Spring to dethrone either of them. Unfortunately, he did not, so he will be returning to the minor leagues for further fine-tuning.
Hudson Potts (Prospect Ranking: 14)
Spring Stats: .333/.333/.333, 2 RBI, 2 R, 2 2B
Potts struggled something mighty with the Sod Poodles in 2019, as he collected an OPS of just .696 while striking out at a 28.6 percent clip.
Here’s the catch; he is still 21 years old. That poor season at Amarillo? Potts was a 20-year-old playing against older competition. Most 20-year-olds are still playing at the Low or High-A levels at best.
San Diego made the aggressive push to see how Potts handled major league pitching, and, in just nine at-bats, he handled himself well by hitting two doubles and a single.
It will not be enough to earn him a spot on the big league roster (Manny Machado will make sure of that), but a repeat at Double-A will help Potts reach his true potential.
Ronald Bolanos (Prospect Ranking: 15)
Spring Stats: No Stats Available
Bolanos made his Major League debut last year as a September call-up and pitched in five games, starting three of them.
Since he was on the 40-man roster, Bolanos was automatically allowed into Peoria but didn’t appear in a game for the Friars.
Bolanos will remain on the 40-man roster but will need someone to get injured if he wants to make the Major League roster.
Reggie Lawson (Prospect Ranking: 16)
Spring Stats: 0-0, 2 IP, 3 K 0.00 ERA
Lawson seemed like he was starting to come into his own as a prospect, especially after striking out 14 batters in 11 innings in the Arizona Fall League.
Come Spring Training. The 22-year-old got the chance to face a different kind of hitter in Arizona; the major league kind. Lawson held firm, striking out two batters in two appearances while surrendering just a single hit.
However, he felt a twinge in his elbow after throwing one of his last pitches in a March 7 game. That twinge was the first signs that Lawson needed Tommy John surgery, which he underwent on March 20.
He will make his return sometime in 2021, but his timeline to make the Majors has significantly been pushed back.
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