Julio Teheran: Next Man Up for Padres

Credit: Premier Tiempo

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Credit: USA Today Sports

“Next man up.” It is the saying that may be the most appropriate for baseball.

The grind of the baseball season means that injuries will occur. There will be stars and crucial pieces of the team to go down. The San Diego Padres experienced that immediately, as Joe Musgrove broke his toe early in spring training.

Musgrove will likely miss 4-6 weeks, which means he should only miss a couple of starts. However, that means that someone else will get an opportunity that they didn’t expect, and there’s nobody better than Julio Teheran.

Teheran is a 32-year-old veteran who hasn’t pitched an entire season in the MLB since 2019.

He was a two-time All-Star for the Atlanta Braves, posting a 3.67 ERA between 2011-2019. He has bounced around between Anaheim and Detroit since. His Tigers tenure ended after just one start when he was shut down for the season. He moved to the Mexican baseball league in 2022, where he pitched very well.

That earned him a minor league deal with the Padres, including a spring training invite. He’s already made two starts in spring training, pitching very well in the process. He has worked five innings, allowed no runs and just three hits while striking out four and walking none. Teheran slots in well as the sixth pitcher in the Padres rotation to start the season, as he’ll have plenty of experience to thrive off of. 

He is on the DPP for Colombia in the World Baseball Classic. That means he can join Colombia’s team if they advance, but he’s staying in Peoria for now. Colombia’s group also contains Mexico, the United States, Canada, and Great Britain, so it’ll be interesting to see if Colombia can finish in the top two spots of their group. Nabil Crismatt is on Colombia’s main roster, so he’ll try and drag Colombia into the knockout rounds.

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“It’s a live arm, there’s some deception to it, he’s been doing some things a little differently than maybe he’s done in the past.”, said manager Bob Melvin, who added, “It’s been pretty impressive.”. He’s a gutsy pitcher with plenty of experience. He got out of a couple of jams in his second start against the Cubs, which earned him more praise from Melvin.

If the Padres are forced to rely on Teheran, he’ll be ready to take that next step. If not, he can serve as a mentor to younger pitchers, either in El Paso or in San Diego. He could also make a move to the bullpen, working longer innings in relief. He is definitely a name to watch over the next month, as he’s got a chance to be a part of the opening-day roster.

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