Former Padres top prospects- Where are they now?

Credit: EVT Sports

Credit: EVT Sports

Over the years, A.J. Preller traded several relevant prospects to build the major league team you see before you today.

At one time, the Padres possessed the most highly-regarded farm system in all of baseball. During the 2018-19 season, there was no doubt that the Padres had the best group of young players. The 2016 international market was huge in aiding the rise of the system as the Padres spent over $80 million on young, unproven talent.

From the DSL to El Paso, the Padres had waves of talent in place to make a splash at Petco Park.

Flash forward to the 2023 season, and only Fernando Tatis Jr. and Adrian Morejon remain on the major league roster from this talented group of prospects. There are still a few prospects sprinkled within the system who were once highly touted, but Jorge Ona, Tirso Ornelas, and Justin Lopez still have a long way to go before they become MLB players.

I thought it would be interesting to see how each of these former Friars is doing in their careers after the Padres.

You may click on each player’s name if you’d like an in-depth look at their numbers via Baseball Reference.

 

The most recent prospect purging is the package sent to Washington for Juan Soto.

MacKenzie Gore

Elbow issues still plagued Gore for the end of the 2022 season, and he did not pitch for the Nationals. A winter’s rest has done well for his health, as the southpaw made the starting rotation out of the spring and is in Washington’s starting five. He is currently 2-0 in his first three starts with a 3.00 ERA. Gore has struck out 18 batters in 15 innings and is holding his velocity in the mid 90’s to go with his assortment of breaking pitches. The 2023 season will tell us a lot about his future in the league.

CJ Abrams

Abrams continues to struggle at the plate. He is not showing much plate discipline, having walked only ten times in 335 major league at-bats. Abrams is entrenched as the Nationals starting shortstop, and they are wisely taking their time with him. The left-handed hitter will be 22 the entire season and has huge potential with the bat. His defense at shortstop is an issue, as Abrams has made four errors this season and owns a .933 fielding percentage. There is an upside here and potential.

Credit: Storm

Robert Hassell

Hassell has not looked like the same player since joining the Nationals system. The left-handed hitter is currently at the Single-A level and hitting below .200 in a handful of at-bats. Hassell played last year at the Double-A level for the Nationals and only managed a .608 OPS in 108 at-bats. At the age of 21, there is still a lot of time for this hitter to make the most of his talent. As for now, he just doesn’t look like the same “can’t miss” prospect he once resembled. Time will tell on this one.

James Wood

At the age of 20, James Wood is showing an impressive swing. He continues to dominate on the baseball diamond, and in the end, he could be the biggest loss for the Padres in this deal for Juan Soto. Wood is batting .375 early in his minor league season in High Single-A ball. There is tremendous power in this left-hander’s swing, but his ability to take pitches and recognize what the pitcher is trying to do to him is what is truly impressive. The Padres gave up a good one here.

Jarlin Susana

Susana is still throwing triple digits, but he is also showing a lack of command. The 19-year-old has walked eight batters this season in 5.1 innings pitched, pitching for Single-A. There is closer ability with this Dominican pitcher, but he needs a lot of refinement. Susana could be an All-Star closer at the major league level, or he could never make it passed Double-A baseball.

 

The Padres made a trade for some homegrown talent in Joe Musgrove.

Hudson Head

At the time he was traded, there were high hopes for Head, who was drafted in the third round out of high school. He has regressed with the Pirates and continues to strike out at an alarming rate. The outfielder struck out 141 times last year in 359 at-bats with Greensboro in High Single-A. He already has 11 K’s in his first 28 at-bats this season in Greensboro. The left-handed hitter is still 22 and could blossom in time. He shows a decent eye at the plate and some power, so there is still an upside to this prospect.

Credit: AP Photo

Omar Cruz

This left-handed pitcher has not been able to live up to the numbers he put up in the Padres system while pitching for the Pirates. Cruz made it to the Double-A level last season but recorded a 5.03 ERA in seven starts and 28 innings in Altoona. He is currently on their roster on the developmental list with an injury. Cruz has struck out 302 batters in his 260 minor-league innings, so there is an upside to his arm. The 24-year-old is a bit undersized but could make it to the majors one day.

Drake Fellows

In August of 2022, Drake Fellows had Tommy John surgery. He pitched in five games for the Pirates in their minor league system in 2021, and that is it. The former Vanderbilt star is 25 and could be a factor in time. He has a long road ahead of him. The Padres drafted him in the 6th round in 2019, and he never threw an inning for the franchise.

 

The Padres made a move for some offense and dealt three players to Pittsburgh for Adam Frazier.

Jack Suwinski

Slugging outfielder Jack Suwinski made a good impression last year for the Pirates in his first year at the major league level. The left-handed hitter slugged 19 homers and produced a .709 OPS in 106 games for the Pirates. This season, he is battling for playing time but has already gone deep five times, proving that he is indeed a major leaguer. The 24-year-old could blossom in the majors and is an interesting young player to keep an eye on moving forward.

I'd like this amount to  

Tucupita Marcano

The 23-year-old infielder is with the major league team and vying for playing time off the bench; The Pirates used Marcano in 49 games last year, where he produced a .562 OPS in 160 at-bats. Marcano has the ability to play all over the diamond, and that is valuable. The left-handed bat is a bit lacking, but at the age of 23, there is still time for him to be a viable hitter. The Pirates are a good team for him to cut his teeth and prove his worth in the league.

(Tucupita Marcano) Credit: AP Photo

Michell Miliano

This big right-handed pitcher is still showing a promising arm. Miliano owns 14 strikeouts this season in 6.1 innings pitched for Greensboro in High Single-A. His power arm is being utilized in a set-up role, and the 23-year-old could be a closer in the future. The jury is still out on if he can make the jump all the way to the majors, as he does have some notable command issues. Miliano walked 28 batters in 25.2 innings last year for Greensboro and can sometimes have no idea where the ball is going.

 

The Padres made a deal for an ace and gave up four players for Yu Darvish.

Reginald Preciado

At the time, Preciado looked like a major trade piece for the Cubs. The teenage talent has not fared well in his time with the Cubs after an impressive start. In 2021, Preciado put up a .894 OPS in the AZL Rookie league as an 18-year-old. Everything looked well, but struggled last season between the Rookie League and Single-A, putting up a .570 OPS in 56 games and 199 at-bats. He struck out 83 times and only managed 14 walks on the year and looked lost at the plate. The 19-year-old is in the Carolina League and has played mostly third base. His future as a shortstop is also in doubt, as his range never improved in the Cubs system.

Ismael Mena

This left-handed hitting outfielder spent the last two seasons in the AZL Rookie League for the Cubs. He produced a .616 OPS in 266 at-bats, showing little power. At the age of 20, Mena could blossom and show some home run ability. He looks to start the year in the AZL League again with hopes of making it to Single-A at some point in the 2023 season.

Owen Caissie

This is a prospect who is really developing. You will probably hear his name fairly soon in a Cubs uniform. The 20-year-old is currently at the Double-A level, where he is off to a hot start recording a 1.131 OPS in nine games and 33 at-bats. He has four homers on the season and is showing an impressive bat from the left side of the plate. The Canadian native had a productive year last year at the age of 19 in the High Single-A level recording 11 homers and a .751 OPS in 105 games. Of these four prospects, He will likely be the best of the bunch.

Credit: MLB

Yeison Santana

This right-handed hitting shortstop put up a .923 OPS for the Padres Rookie League in 2019. As a member of the Cubs, his numbers have not looked as good. Santana put up a .681 OPS between both Single-A levels last season. He still shows a plus eye at the plate but very little power potential. He is not a huge prospect, but at the age of 21, Santana is scrappy enough to make it to the majors one day. His swing is solid, and he can play multiple infield positions.

 

Looking for another ace-like pitcher, the Padres dealt for Blake Snell

Luis Patino

This Colombian pitcher has gone up and down between the minor and majors in the Rays system. Patino has started 21 games for the Rays over the last few seasons and put up a 5.09 ERA and 85 strikeouts in the process. His command issues are still a problem, and currently, the right-handed pitcher is at the Triple-A level, where he has a 5.25 ERA and has walked ten batters in 12 innings. Patino is still 23 and has been rather healthy his whole career. There is still an upside to him, and it may take time for him to grow.

Blake Hunt

At 24, the road is still bright for this young catcher. Traditionally, the position is full of players who took time to develop. Hunt is a defensive wizard who really works well with his pitchers. The bat has been an issue, and mainly the strikeouts for the big right-hander. Hunt has a lot of power to his swing, but it can be long. This season, he is off to a hot start in the Double-A level, batting .318 over his first handful of games. If he can keep adjusting, there is definitely a place for Hunt at the major league level one day.

Credit: TinCaps

Cole Wilcox

This young pitcher is sure to make his debut soon with the Rays. Wilcox has pitched well in the Rays organization, recording a 2.37 ERA in 19 games and 68.1 innings pitched in the Rays system. This season in his first two starts at the Double-A level. Wilcox owns a 1.13 ERA and a 0.75 WHIP in eight innings pitched. The 23-year-old has good size (6-foot-5) and will likely remain a fixture in the rotation. There is a lot to like about his future in the league.

 

A trade deadline trade for Mitch Moreland

Hudson Potts

I really thought Potts would be a solid major-league-caliber player. That may happen one day, but he has taken a longer path than expected. In the Red Sox system, Potts struggled to record a .751 OPS last season at the Double-A level. He was signed by the Braves this winter and is in their system now, playing at the Double-A level for the Mississippi Braves. Strikeouts are an issue for this power-hitter, and he will need to make contact to advance. This 2016 first-round pick is a work in progress and is in his third organization.

Jeisson Rosario

Like Potts, Rosario is in his third organization as the New York Yankees claimed the outfielder in March of 2022. At 23, Rosario has not really progressed. The left-handed hitter has plus speed but cannot transition that into stolen bases; He currently has 36 caught stealings in his career compared to 61 steals. Rosario put up a respectable .777 OPS last season for the Yankees Double-A team and is currently the starting outfielder there this season. The Dominican slugged 11 homers last season in 362 plate appearances which was a pleasant surprise to the Yankees.

 

A trade deadline mistake for Mike Clevinger

Gabriel Arias

Arias has always been considered a glove-first infielder, but his offense has picked up in recent years. The right-handed hitter made his major league debut last season, and he has gotten into a couple of games this 2023 season for the Guardians. He is a bit of a free swinger, but there is some real power potential in his bat. At the age of 23, Cleveland has a decent prospect who has continued to get better. Josh Naylor and Cal Quantrill paid immediate dividends to the Guardians in the Clevinger trade, but Cantillo and Arias may be the best players obtained by Cleveland.

Credit: Storm

Joey Cantillo

Don’t look now, but Joey Cantillo is turning into a real viable prospect. In the last two seasons, he has gone 4-3 with a 1.84 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 67.2 innings pitched. During that span at the Double-A level, the native of Hawaii owns a 1.007 WHIP and is dominating. Cantillo shows excellent command, and his fastball velocity is up to the mid-90s now. The 23-year-old southpaw could make his debut with Cleveland in the next couple of years. There is a lot to like about Cantillo as this deal gets worse and worse for the Padres.

Owen Miller

Miller made his major league debut in 2021 and spent last year with the Guardians at the major league level. In December, Miller was traded to the Brewers, where he is getting a chance to play for his hometown team. The versatile right-handed hitter has a good swing and should enjoy a prosperous career in the majors. Miller is not flashy but does several things well, and that is important. He can play all over the diamond and has played some outfield this year for the Brewers.

 

For Jurickson Profar, before the 2020 season.

Michael “Buddy” Reed

The Padres traded the speedy outfielder, and he hasn’t really progressed with the bat. Defensively, Reed can play the outfield with the best out there. But his bat has always been a work in progress. He can look lost at the plate from time to time. Reed made it all the way to Triple-A with the A’s in 2021. Buddy Reed is a Dodger now. He was signed to a minor league contract last year and is currently in Triple-A with Los Angeles. He could debut with the major league team if he can show anything with the bat.

Austin Allen

The left-handed hitting catcher has plenty of power but has not been able to catch on with a major league team. Allen played in 23 major league games for the A’s over the past three years but was never able to crack the major league roster in a full-time capacity. The 29-year-old put up an .837 OPS in 55 games at the Triple-A level last season for Oakland. The Marlins signed Allen this past winter, and he is currently at the Triple-A level for them, trying to make it back to the majors.

 

I'd like this amount to  

A three-team deal with the Indians and Reds in July of 2019.

Taylor Trammell

Left-handed hitting Taylor Trammel was dealt to the Mariners in the Austin Nola deal. He has been up and down between the majors and Triple-A for the last two seasons for Seattle. The Padres acquired Trammel, essentially giving up Franmil Reyes and Logan Allen for him in a three-team deal with the Reds. Trammel has some ability but is stuck on a franchise with plenty of competition. The 25-year-old outfielder is currently on the 10-day IL for the Mariners with a broken hamate bone.

Credit: El Paso Chihuahuas

Logan Allen

In July 2019, the Padres traded Allen to the Indians with Franmil Reyes in a three-team deal. The left-handed was stashed in the minor leagues for the rest of the season but pitched in 21 games over the next three seasons for Cleveland, posting a 5.45 ERA. The Orioles claimed Allen late last season, and he is currently pitching at the Triple-A level for the Rockies. The southpaw will likely make it back to the major leagues soon, and we have yet to see the best from Logan Allen.

 

To the Nationals for Daniel Hudson

Mason Thompson

This right-handed pitcher is really turning the corner, pitching out of the Nationals’ bullpen. Thompson has excellent size and a powerful fastball which has excellent movement. In 2023, he owns a 1.35 ERA in his first 13.1 innings pitched. In three years for the Nationals, Thompson has recorded a 3.02 ERA in 59.2 innings pitched at the major league level. The Padres did not get the same value from Hudson as he was a bust for the Padres.

Jordy Barley

Right-handed hitting infielder Jordy Barley was also dealt to the Nationals, and he has struggled with the organization. Barley is currently at the Single-A level and may never advance to the majors. The Padres drafted plenty of international talent that did not pan out, and this Dominican infielder is among them. Barley put up a .555 OPS last season in 85 games and 295 at-bats.

 

Some other former Padres prospects and how they are doing currently.

Xavier Edwards

Hunter Renfroe and Edwards were traded to the Rays for Jake Cronenworth and Tommy Pham in December of 2019. Edwards was drafted in the first round of the 2018 draft out of high school. The Rays were aggressive with Edwards sending him to Double-A in his first year with the organization in 2021. He responded, hitting .302, and looked to be a future star in the system. The 2022 season was not productive for Edwards, as he struggled at the Triple-A level, putting up a .678 OPS in 349 at-bats. In November of 2022, the Rays traded Edwards to the Miami Marlins. The speedy infielder is at Triple-A for the Marlins and will likely debut at some point very soon.

El Paso Chihuahuas

Michael Gettys

Toolsy outfielder Michael Gettys hit 31 homers in 2019 while playing in El Paso and seemed destined to debut with the Padres at some point in the 2020 season. Covid hit, and he was released by the club in late 2020. The Red Sox signed Gettys, and he has been very underwhelming for Boston. The right-handed hitter has yet to make his major league debut, and at the age of 27, that window is closing. Gettys is currently on the IL at the Double-A level.

Nick Margevicius

In 2019, this left-handed pitcher out from Rider University made 12 starts for the Padres at the major league level recording a 6.79 ERA. In early 2020, Margevicius was selected off waivers by the Seattle Mariners. He made seven starts in 2020 for the M’s, putting up a 4.57 ERA, and made three in 2021. The southpaw pitched the entire 2022 season in Triple-A and was signed by the Braves in April, and is working his way back into the major leagues.

Andres Munoz

This flamethrower was dealt to the Mariners in the Austin Nola deal. He was traded while recovering from Tommy John surgery and took some time to get his strength back. Last season, Munoz struck out 96 batters in 65 innings, recording a 2.49 ERA. The Mariners are currently using Munoz as a closer, but he has battled nagging injuries. At 24, there is still a huge upside for Munoz, who regularly throws in the triple-digit range with his fastball.

Logan Driscoll

Versatile left-handed hitter Logan Driscoll is progressing in the Rays system after a trade with Manuel Margot for Emilio Pagan in early 2020. He is playing third base, outfield, and catching for the Montgomery Biscuits at the Double-A level. Last season at the High Single-A level, Driscoll put up a .721 OPS in 60 games. The 25-year-old is still a ways from making it to the majors, but there is a lot to like about his ability to play multiple positions.

Credit: AP Photo

Brayan Medina

The Padres traded Medina and Emilio Pagan to the Twins for Taylor Rogers in April of 2022. The power pitcher is very young and full of promise. He has the ability to strike batters out but still continues to issue free passes in terms of walks. Medina walked 20 batters last season in 23.2 innings and produced a 6.46 ERA at the rookie ball level last season. The 20-year-old right-handed pitcher has the ability, but the floor is really low with him.

Junior Perez

In June of 2020, the Paded dealt for Jore Mateo from the Oakland A’s and traded a young outfielder in the process. Junior Perez produced a .861 OPS in 2019 at the Rookie Ball level and looked like a promising young player. Since being dealt to the A’s, Perez has regressed some. He played in the California League last season for the second year in a row and produced a .787 OPS. He is currently at the High Single-A level and is 21 years old.

Matt Brash

This Canadian right-handed pitcher has huge upside and was dealt to the Mariners for Taylor Williams, who was lost via waivers seven days later. The Padres gambled with their roster juggling and lost a valuable young arm. Brash is capable of being a starting pitcher, but the M’s are utilizing him in the bullpen. He has struck out 17 batters this season in 8.2 innings pitched but is sporting a 6.23 ERA. The Padres really regret allowing this pitcher to get away.

 

Overview of the moves

A few of these players may turn out to be very good major league players. Some are already useful and in the major leagues and building their reputations.

The nature of the business is to deal unproven players to strengthen the major league roster, The Padres did just that as they came into relevancy. Sure, you’d like a homegrown team of players drafted and cultivated within the system. But the Padres did not have the time to develop that. They needed results now, and one cannot argue with the talented group at Petco Park currently.

(Visited 946 times, 5 visits today)
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
3 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Random Dude
Random Dude
1 month ago

Thanks for this article. It was a great idea. It would also be fascinating to revisit these same names every year for the next couple of years to see how this continues to shake out. Also, what happened to the other players in the Austin Nola trade?

Billyk06
Billyk06
1 month ago

Would be so nice to have some of these pieces in the rotation or minors. I think we regret the Clevinger and Nola trade the most.

3
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x