Down on the Farm: July’s Top Performers- Urias, Allen & Baez Oh My!

(Luis Urias) Credit: MiLB.com

Credit: EVT News

Franchy Cordero– CF, Triple-A, El Paso Chihuahuas
.337/.371/.696, 5 2B, 5 3B, 6 HR, 21 RBI, 64 TB, .359 ISO, 165 wRC+ 

Since being demoted back down to Triple-A seemingly for good earlier this month, Franchy Cordero has been excelling for the Chihuahuas. However, despite his successful month of July, Cordero still is having similar problems in Triple-A that he was having in the big leagues. His strikeout rate is still hovering around 30 percent, while his walk rate currently sits at seven percent. If Cordero can work on having a more balanced approach at the plate he can be an infinitely more successful big league player. With speed, defense, and all the intangibles, Cordero could be an everyday regular if he can work on his plate discipline and overall offensive approach.

Luis Urias– 2B, Double-A, San Antonio Missions
65 AB, .354/.442/.385, 2 2B, 8 RBI, 25 TB, .031 ISO, 140 wRC+

After a downturn in the month of June following a hot stretch to start the season, Urias bounced back in a big way at the beginning of July prior to his ankle injury. There’s still the glaring lack of power problem, but Urias has continued to show his advanced approach at the plate throughout the season. With his plate discipline, as one of the few players who consistently walks more than he strikes out, Urias is destined for a future as a big leaguer. However, whether his power ever materializes will be a determining factor in the kind of big league player he will end up being.

T.J. Weir/Eric Yardley/Trey Wingenter/Kyle McGrath– Double-A, San Antonio Missions
17.1 IP, 16 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 17 K, 1.17 ERA
11 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 0.82 ERA
10.1 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 17 K, 1.74 ERA
8.2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10 K, 1.04 ERA

The San Antonio Missions’ bullpen has been fairly successful all year long, but they were especially good in the month of July. The foursome of Weir, Yardley, Wingenter, and McGrath were absolutely lights out in July, giving up just six earned runs in 47 and a third innings. In total, the foursome also struck out 54 batters to just 10 walks in those 47 plus innings. It’s hard to get excited about relief pitcher prospects, but the Padres may have enough firepower in San Antonio to fill a whole bullpen in 2018 and beyond.

Austin Allen– C, High-A, Lake Elsinore Storm
119 AB, .374/.411/.714, 7 2B, 1 3B, 10 HR, 85 TB, .317 ISO, 190 wRC+ 

Austin Allen is to pitchers in the California League what Michel Baez is to hitters in the Midwest League. A juggernaut. Over the last month, Allen has been utterly dominant, mashing 10 home runs and 18 extra base hits in total while winning two player of the week awards in the Cal League. We always knew Allen could hit, but he’s taken it to a whole new level over the last two months really. At this point, Allen may be worthy of a spot on San Antonio’s roster before the conclusion of the season. It seems like I have gotten to the point where I am writing about the catcher daily.

Jorge Ona– RF, Low-A, Fort Wayne TinCaps
92 AB, .326/.410/.467, 10 2B, 1 HR, 16 RBI, 43 TB, .141 ISO, 149 wRC+ 

Fernando Tatis Jr. and Michel Baez usually grab most of the headlines for the TinCaps, but Jorge Ona has very steadily been one of the most productive players in not only Fort Wayne, but in the entire Padres minor league system. He’s showing consistent plate discipline as well as a really solid feel for hitting. The big concern is the lack of power to this point, but Ona is hitting enough to at least lessen those concerns so far. He may not have the ceiling of Tatis, but he has performed very well to this point in the season.

Credit: Ryan Cox

Michel Baez- RHP, Low-A, Fort Wayne TinCaps
29.2 IP, 15 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 47 K, 0.78 ERA

No Padre prospect was more impressive in the month of July than right-hander Michel Baez. Not only did Baez mow down Midwest League hitters with 47 (!) strikeouts in just 29.2 innings pitched, but he capped off his month with a 14 strikeout performance just last night. It’s pretty clear that the 21-year-old Baez has nothing else to prove in Fort Wayne, so he should see his debut in Lake Elsinore in very short order.

Pedro Avila– RHP, Low-A, Fort Wayne TinCaps
26 IP, 21 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 34 K, 1.04 ERA

If not for teammate Michel Baez, right-hander Pedro Avila very well could have been the most impressive Padres’ pitcher for the month of July. Not only did Avila maintain a similar K/BB ratio that Baez did, but he also did a similar job of limiting runs. Sure, Avila gave up more hits than Baez, but he still got the job done. Considering Avila was acquired in the giveaway of catcher Derek Norris, that deal is looking more and more like one of the best trades of A.J. Preller’s tenure with the Padres. Avila now looks like a legit prospect after beginning his Padres’ career looking more like a lottery ticket type of prospect.

Henry Henry– RHP, Short Season, Tri-City Dust Devils
23 IP, 13 H, 4 ER, 6 BB, 19 K

We all agree that Henry Henry has an 80 grade name. Even if he was awful on the mound, he would still have such a great name that I wouldn’t even care. However, he’s just been so good so far this season that it makes his name even better. Henry maybe doesn’t lack the impactful talent of the likes of Baez and Adrian Morejon, but he has arguably been nearly as successful as both over the last month or so. It remains to be seen where his future is headed, but so far so good for the right-hander.

Tirso Ornelas- OF, AZL Padres
80 AB, .325/.439/.413, 7 2B, 10 RBI, 33 TB, .088 ISO, 139 wRC+ 

The Padres signed so many players in last year’s international signing period that is easy to lose track of them. While Adrian Morejon, Luis Almanzar, Jeisson Rosario, and Jordy Barley have all gotten top prospect billing, outfielder Tirso Ornelas has so far flown under the radar. That may not be the case much longer after his strong performance in July. He has yet to flash much power to this point, as he has still yet to hit his first professional home run, but he’s done enough at the plate otherwise to make an impact.

Nick Margevicius- LHP, AZL Padres
17 IP, 16 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 26 K, 1.06 ERA

Martin Carrasco– RHP, DSL Padres
24 IP, 11 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 16 K, 1.13 ERA

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Patrick Brewer
Editorial and Prospect Writer for East Village Times. Twenty-five years young, Patrick has lived in San Diego for his entire life and has been a Padres fan nearly as long. Patrick lives for baseball and is always looking to learn new things about the game he loves through advanced stats.

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Patrick Brewer
Editorial and Prospect Writer for East Village Times. Twenty-five years young, Patrick has lived in San Diego for his entire life and has been a Padres fan nearly as long. Patrick lives for baseball and is always looking to learn new things about the game he loves through advanced stats.