San Diego Padres News: Top 5 San Diego Padres Prospects

Mandatory Credit: MiLB
Mandatory Credit: MiLB

 

 

Despite the promotions of Colin Rea and Travis Jankowski in recent weeks, the San Diego Padres still have quite a few minor leaguers that could see September call ups. Minor League playoffs will also determine if and when a player is called up to the Major League level. An exciting time for these young men. 

This following list will include the five Padre minor leaguers that are the closest to a potential call up as well as those with the most future potential. 40 man roster spots will also determine if a player is called up or not. The Padres wouldn’t want to waste a 40 man roster spot on a player that will not play at the MLB level any time soon. 

The scouting grades used are from fangraphs.com and include a current score for each aspect of a player’s game as well as a future grade should that player reach their predicted ceiling.

Predicting a prospects ability and upside is hardly an exact science. There are certain aspects to a player’s game that can be used to judge how a particular player can perform on the Major League level. The following players have a tremendous upside and could get significant Major League playing time eventually. The question is if that playing time will be with the Padres or not.

1. Hunter Renfroe      Outfielder    23 years old

Hit              Game Power         Raw Power      Speed      Field          Throws         Future Value

30/50+             30/60                    65/65            55/55       45/50+      60/60                        55

More than any other Padre minor leaguer, Hunter Renfroe is the next guy who will most likely get a call up following the promotions of Travis Jankowski and Colin Rea. Renfroe recently got the call to play in Triple A and has so far blossomed in his new role.

Depending on the outcome of the playoff race down in Triple A, Hunter Renfroe could see a call up sooner rather than later to the big league club. Hunter Renfroe probably has the highest potential ceiling of any Padre minor leaguer with his ability to hit home runs, drive in runs, as well as above average speed and a strong throwing arm.

At best Renfroe is a starting fixture in the Padres outfield for years to come and at worst he is probably a fourth outfielder that can provide a lot of raw power of the bench. If Justin Upton does leave the Padres via free agency, look for Hunter Renfroe to be the guy to take up the mantle for the Padres as the power hitting left fielder of the future.

2. Jose Rondon       Shortstop        21 years old

Hit          Game Power        Raw Power           Speed         Field         Throws       Future Value

20/50     20/35                     35/40                      50/50+       55/60        55/55          45

Throughout the season, the Padres have struggled with the question of who is their starting shortstop and have spent most of the season attempting to upgrade the position for both the short-term and the long-term. Rondon is only 21 years old out of Venezuela and is currently playing for the Lake Elsinore Storm in Single A.

It seems unlikely that he will be ready for a call up this year or even next year, but Rondon does have some good potential at the shortstop position. He isn’t much of a flashy player but does have good skills overall minus his lack of strong power numbers.

He hits well, has good range in the field with a good arm, and is a player that can hit for a high average. It remains to be seen whether this performance can translate into the big leagues but Rondon still has a lot of room left to improve and a lot of time for development.

Mandatory Credit: UT San Diego
Mandatory Credit: UT San Diego

3. Tayron Guerrero     Relief Pitcher   24 years old

Fastball       Slider          Command      Future Value

70/80           45/55           35/45               40

One thing that has always been a strong suit for the Padres is their bullpen. Year in and year out it seems the Padres maintain one of the best bullpens in the league with some of the best bullpen arms in the league.

Tayron Guerrero is just another guy that has the potential to be a strong reliever at the back-end of the Padres bullpen. With the possibility of the Padres losing either Joaquin Benoit or Shawn Kelley in the offseason, it seems evident that the Padres will need someone else to step up into a role at the back-end of the bullpen. Guerrero might be that guy next year but could see himself get an audition this September.

Guerrero is a big guy, 6’7” who can throw in the upper 90s with great consistency. His slider has improved in recent years which has giving him the possibility of a second plus pitch to go with his fastball. The problem for Guerrero throughout his career has always been his control. This year in Double A he walked over 4 batters per nine innings before being promoted to Triple A where he has walked over 7 batters per nine innings. If Guerrero is able to develop more refined control he has the possibility of one day being a closer in the major leagues.

4. Rymer Liriano    Outfielder       24 years old

Hit             Game Power        Raw Power      Speed          Field         Throws       Future Value

30/45       30/50+                    60/60                50/50+       50/50        55/55          45

Mandatory Credit: Getty Images
Mandatory Credit: Getty Images

Rymer Liriano got ample playing time with the Padres in 2014 and many thought he would see more time at the big league level in 2015 and going forward. This was before the acquisitions of Wil Myers, Justin Upton, and Matt Kemp that pretty much guaranteed Liriano would stay in the minor leagues for another year.

Liriano finds himself behind five or six outfielders on the totem pole (if you include Melvin Upton, Travis Jankowski and Hunter Renfroe) and is unlikely to see any big playing time in the Padres outfield anytime soon. With that being said, it makes sense that the Padres will call him up in September (along with Renfroe and perhaps Dickerson) to give their MLB team more depth and more options over the remainder of the season. Liriano has a slash line of .281/.374/.429 in Triple A this season and has continued to progress as a hitter.

Liriano has strong raw power and good mechanics at the plate but has struggled to translate that into much in game power. Beyond that Liriano is an above average fielder with a well above average arm as well as slightly above average speed. If Liriano doesn’t improve further from where he is currently at he has the potential to be a fourth or fifth outfielder long-term for the Padres or a 20 steal, 20 home run player starter with plus defense should he complete his development and reach his ceiling.

5. Alex Dickerson     Outfielder    25 years old

Hit            Game Power      Raw Power         Speed      Field        Throws      Future Value

30/45       30/55                   60/60                    35/35       40/45      45/45          40

More so than any other Padre player or prospect, especially Rymer Liriano, Alex Dickerson may be lost in the outfield shuffle. At this point he is seventh or eighth on the outfield totem pole and is very unlikely to be called up this September or to see any significant playing time in 2016 and beyond for the Padres.

Dickerson had some previous experience at first base but was error prone so he was moved back to the outfield which is more of a natural position for him. He is an average fielder because of his below average speed but is a decent hitter at the plate with the ability to make good contact and hit the ball all around the field. Dickerson has the potential to be a decent back up outfielder but it seems unlikely there is room for him in that role on the San Diego Padres.

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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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