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San Diego Padres

Prospects Overview

Top 30 Prospects

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Player Reports

  1. 1. MacKenzie Gore | LHP
    MacKenzie Gore
    Born: Feb 24, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 197
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Whiteville, N.C., 2017 (1st round).
    Signed By: Nick Brannon.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 60. Changeup: 60. Curveball: 55. Control: 60.

    TRACK RECORD: Gore led tiny Whiteville (N.C.) High to three state championships in four years and won BA’s High School Player of the Year award in 2017. The Padres drafted him third overall and signed him for a franchise-record $6.7 million to forgo an East Carolina commitment. Gore’s first full season was interrupted by recurring blisters that sent him to the injured list three times, but he flourished with full health in 2019. Gore posted the lowest ERA (1.69) and WHIP (0.83) of any pitcher in the minors who threw at least 100 innings despite spending the year at hitter-friendly high Class A Lake Elsinore and Double-A Amarillo, and he entered 2020 considered arguably the top pitching prospect in baseball. Gore looked sharp in spring training, but after the coronavirus pandemic shut camps down, he arrived at summer camp in July with his delivery out of sync. He spent the season at the alternate training site smoothing that out and improved toward the end of the year.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Gore is a tall, lanky lefthander whose elite athleticism is the foundation of his success. His delivery features a lot of moving parts, including a high leg kick where he brings his knee nearly to his collarbone, hands raised high above his head and a slight turn away from the batter, but he generally has the strength and body control to repeat his mechanics. Gore explodes out of his delivery with tremendous extension that helps his stuff play up. His fastball ranges from 91-96 mph and sits at 93-94. The pitch gets on hitters faster than they expect, resulting in a lot of late swings and misses in the strike zone. Gore’s 83-87 mph slider with tight spin and late break is another plus pitch he can locate to both sides of the plate, but there are days his 76-79 mph curveball with late, 1-to-7 snap is his better breaking ball. He rarely has a feel for both of them in the same game and often has to pick one. Gore’s 79-83 mph changeup features late sink at the bottom of the zone and is another plus pitch the few times he throws it. Gore throws everything for strikes with plus control when he’s right, but his delivery fell out of rhythm over the summer. Different observers alternately saw problems with his direction to the plate, his upper and lower body being disconnected and inconsistent timing with his arm stroke and release point. The result was a velocity drop into the low 90s and sharply reduced command. Gore worked through the summer to get back in sync and began looking more like his best self by the end of the season. He still is working to get all four of his pitches working at the same time.

    THE FUTURE: Gore’s ability to throw four quality pitches for strikes gives him front-of-the-rotation potential, but he’s going to have to maintain his high-maintenance delivery. The Padres plan to take it slow and start him back at Double-A in 2021.

  2. 2. CJ Abrams | SS
    CJ Abrams
    Born: Oct 3, 2000
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 185
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Roswell, Ga., 2019 (1st round).
    Signed By: Tyler Stubblefield.

    Hitting: 70. Power: 50. Running: 80. Fielding: 60. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres considered Abrams the top prep shortstop in the 2019 draft and were thrilled he fell to them at the sixth overall pick. After signing for $5.2 million, Abrams hit .401 in the Rookie-level Arizona League to win the league’s MVP award and received a promotion to low Class A Fort Wayne. He spent 2020 at the alternate training site and excelled against older competition before finishing the year with a dominant showing at instructional league.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Abrams has a rare blend of elite athleticism and a gifted feel for hitting. His flat, fluid swing consistently produces hard contact and allows him to drive the ball wherever it’s pitched. Abrams has the direct stroke and bat speed to hit any fastball and the hand-eye coordination to barrel secondary pitches even when he’s fooled or off-balance. He occasionally chases off the edges of the plate, but he rarely swings and misses in the strike zone. A potential .300 hitter, Abrams has the long, lean frame to add strength and reach 20-home run power at maturity. His elite speed makes him a premier stolen base threat. Abrams has rapidly improved defensively at shortstop. He makes highlight-reel plays with his wide range and reliable hands, though his short, low-slot throwing stroke and average arm strength fit better at second base. Evaluators believe Abrams could excel in center field as well.

    THE FUTURE: Abrams has the skills to be a dynamic talent atop the order. The Padres believe he’ll move quickly in 2021.

  3. 3. Luis Campusano | C
    Luis Campusano
    Born: Sep 29, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 232
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Augusta, Ga., 2017 (2nd round).
    Signed By: Tyler Stubblefield.

    Hitting: 55. Power: 60. Running: 30. Fielding: 50. Arm: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: Campusano suffered a concussion shortly after the Padres drafted him in 2017 and had a season-ending concussion in 2018, but he stayed healthy in 2019 and won the high Class A California League batting title (.325) and co-MVP award. He made his big league debut in 2020 and homered in his first game before missing the rest of the regular season with a left wrist sprain. In October, Campusano was arrested and charged with felony marijuana possession in Georgia.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Campusano is one of the strongest players in the Padres’ system. He occasionally swung a 40-ounce bat in games in the minors and still demonstrated some of the best bat speed among his peers. Campusano pummels baseballs on a line from foul pole to foul pole and is progressively learning to elevate for home runs. He’s aggressive and swings hard, but he stays within the strike zone to limit his strikeouts and draws plenty of walks. Campusano has a strong, flexible lower half behind the plate and lost 10-15 pounds to improve his quickness. He’s an excellent blocker and has improved his receiving to average to go with above-average arm strength.

    THE FUTURE: Campusano’s upcoming legal proceedings cloud his future. On talent, he could be an everyday catcher who hits in the middle of the order.

  4. 4. Adrian Morejon | LHP
    Adrian Morejon
    Born: Feb 27, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 224
    Drafted/Signed: Cuba, 2016.
    Signed By: Chris Kemp/Trevor Schumm/Felix Feliz.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 50 . Changeup: 60. Curveball: 60. Control: 45.

    TRACK RECORD: Morejon was the star pitcher on Cuba’s junior national teams and signed with the Padres for a franchise-record $11 million in 2016. He battled a series of arm injuries after signing, including a season-ending shoulder injury after his major league debut in 2019, but he stayed healthy in 2020 and posted a 4.66 ERA as a long reliever and spot starter for the Padres.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Morejon has long had premium stuff from the left side. His fastball sits 94-96 mph as a starter and touches 99 in short bursts with remarkably little effort. He’s begun repeating his release point on his 79-82 mph curveball to make it a consistent plus offering that sweeps across the plate and finishes with sharp, late drop at the bottom of the strike zone. Morejon has a traditional changeup with sink and run, but his diving, swing-and-miss knuckle-change is the better offspeed pitch and has taken a more prominent role in his arsenal. He also introduced a vertical slider in 2020 that shows promise but is the clear final pitch in his arsenal. Morejon pitched with more confidence and improved his strike-throwing in his second stint in the majors, but he’s still working on fastball command. He frequently leaves his fastball up over the plate and gets hit hard. He also has never pitched more than 65.1 innings in a season.

    THE FUTURE: Morejon has potent stuff, but his durability and command are questions. He will try to win a rotation spot in 2021.

  5. 5. Ha-Seong Kim | SS
    Ha-Seong Kim
    Born: Oct 17, 1995
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'9" Wt.: 167
    Drafted/Signed: Signed: South Korea, 2020
    Signed By: Hun Namgung

    Hitting: 55. Power: 45. Running: 55. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: Kim showed rare athleticism from an early age and became an everyday shortstop at 19 years old in the Korea Baseball Organization, South Korea's major league. He quickly drew MLB scouts’ attention and blossomed into one of the country's biggest stars from 2015-20, averaging more than 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases per season. Kim saved his best for last and hit .330 with a career-high 30 home runs, 109 RBIs and 23 stolen bases for Kiwoom in 2020. The Heroes posted him after the season and he signed a four-year, $28 million contract with the Padres.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Kim will likely face an adjustment period in the U.S., but he has the tools and athleticism to be an impact player over time. He’s an athletic, instinctual defender who plays a solid shortstop and has the versatility to play second or third base. He puts himself in good positions to make throws and has average arm strength, with the ability to reach back for more as needed. Kim rarely faced fastballs above 90 mph in Korea and may struggle initially against MLB pitching, but he has a good swing and the twitch and athleticism to adjust and eventually be an above-average hitter. He has the power to drive balls out to his pull side and projects for around 15 home runs, though he will get pull-happy at times and can struggle with pitches moving away from him. Kim previously flashed plus speed, but in 2020 he clocked more average run times. He still adds value on the bases as a capable basestealer with good jumps and instincts.

    THE FUTURE: Kim’s well-rounded skill set allows him to impact the game in a variety of ways. He has the ability to be anything from an everyday infielder to a multi-positional regular.

  6. 6. Ryan Weathers | LHP
    Ryan Weathers
    Born: Dec 17, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 230
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Loretto, Tenn., 2018 (1st round).
    Signed By: Tyler Stubblefield.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 55. Changeup: 50. Control: 60.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres went above industry consensus to draft Weathers seventh overall in 2018. He battled arm fatigue and conditioning issues in his first full season, but he rewarded the Padres in 2020. Weathers arrived at summer camp throwing 4-5 mph harder and impressed all summer at the alternate training site. The Padres put him on their National League Division Series roster despite the fact he had never pitched above low Class A, and he became the second pitcher ever to make his big league debut in the postseason.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Weathers is the son of former reliever David Weathers and shows the polish often seen in big league progeny. He shows an advanced feel for sequencing, is rarely fazed by pressure situations and calmly locates his entire arsenal to both sides of the plate. After previously sitting 88-92 mph, Weathers’ fastball jumped to 92-95 over longer stints and 95-97 in short bursts with carry through the strike zone in 2020. His slider also became a tighter, harder pitch in the mid 80s and his changeup with heavy fade remains potentially above-average, though he’s sometimes too firm with it. Weathers has a portly, heavyset frame, but he’s deceptively athletic and repeats his delivery for plus control.

    THE FUTURE: The Padres internally compare Weathers to Hyun-Jin Ryu as a hefty lefthander who effectively locates his entire arsenal. He still has to show he can hold his improved stuff over a full season and will begin 2021 back in the minors.

  7. 7. Robert Hassell | OF
    Robert Hassell
    Born: Aug 15, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 195
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Thompson's Sta., Tenn., 2020 (1).
    Signed By: Tyler Stubblefield.

    Hitting: 60. Power: 50. Running: 55. Fielding: 55. Arm: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: Hassell’s precocious hitting ability first rose to national prominence when he played for Tennessee in the 2013 and 2014 Little League World Series. He later hit .514 to lead USA Baseball’s 18U National Team to the silver medal at the 2019 World Cup, cementing his status as the top high school hitter in the 2020 class. The Padres made Hassell the first prep player drafted, No. 8 overall, and signed him for $4.3 million to forgo a Vanderbilt commitment. He reported to the alternate training site before finishing up with a strong showing at instructional league.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Hassell has a picturesque lefthanded swing geared for contact. It’s an easy, loose, direct swing, and he has a preternatural ability to manipulate the barrel and cover all parts of the strike zone. Hassell has excellent strike-zone discipline and projects to be at least a plus hitter, but his lean, thin frame raises questions about his power potential. His long limbs and big hands provide hope he can add enough strength to reach 15-20 home runs. Hassell is an average runner down the line and ticks up to above-average in center field, where he glides naturally to the ball as an above-average defender. He touched 92 mph as a pitcher and has the arm strength for right field if needed.

    THE FUTURE: Hassell’s pure hitting ability gives him an excellent foundation. His physical development will determine if he reaches his All-Star potential.

  8. 8. Tucupita Marcano | 3B/2B
    Tucupita Marcano
    Born: Sep 16, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 165
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2016.
    Signed By: Antonio Alejos/Chris Kemp/Yfrain Linares (Padres).

    Hitting: 50. Power: 30. Running: 60. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: Marcano is the son of famed Venezuelan player Raul Marcano and signed with the Padres for $320,000 in 2016. After hitting .366 in his stateside debut, Marcano finished tied for fifth in the Midwest League in hits in his first full season in 2019 and hit .370 in the California League playoffs after being promoted. The Padres brought him to their alternate training site in 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Marcano is extraordinarily lean and lacks power, but he knows who he is and doesn’t try to do too much. He’s a smart hitter who controls the strike zone and makes consistent contact with a direct, compact stroke. He lines the ball to all fields and is a prolific bunter with a great feel for when to lay one down, including on squeeze plays. He beats bunts out for singles with his plus speed, but he makes poor decisions on the basepaths and frequently gets picked off or caught stealing. Marcano is an average defender whose best asset is his versatility—he is solid at third base and second base, can fill in at shortstop and began playing left field and first base at the alternate site.

    THE FUTURE: Marcano is frequently described as a winning player who does the little things that make a difference. His contact skills and versatility have him ticketed for a utility role.

  9. 9. Michel Baez | RHP
    Michel Baez
    Born: Jan 21, 1996
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'7" Wt.: 237
    Drafted/Signed: Cuba, 2016.
    Signed By: Trevor Schumm/Jake Koenig.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 30. Changeup: 55. Curveball: 30. Control: 45.

    TRACK RECORD: Baez briefly pitched in Cuba’s major league, Serie Nacional, as an 18-year-old before leaving the island. He signed with the Padres for $3 million in December 2016. Baez worked as a starter in the low minors, but he broke into the majors as a reliever with the Padres in 2019. Expected to take on a bigger bullpen role in 2020, Baez instead regressed and spent most of the season at the alternate training site.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Baez is physically enormous at nearly 6-foot-8, which is both a blessing and a curse. He generates easy 94-97 mph fastballs with his natural strength but struggles to keep his big body and long limbs in sync, resulting in inconsistent mechanics and wide fluctuations in his velocity and his control. Baez’s breaking balls stalled in their development and remain well below-average pitches, leaving him to rely almost entirely on his fastball and above-average 86-88 mph changeup. He’s also had minor back or shoulder injuries every year since he signed.

    THE FUTURE: The Padres haven’t given up on Baez as a starter, but his breaking balls and control need to come a long way for him to stick in the rotation. If they don’t, his fastball-changeup combination gives him a chance to stick as a reliever.

  10. 10. Jorge Ona | OF
    Jorge Ona
    Born: Dec 31, 1996
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 235
    Drafted/Signed: Cuba, 2016.
    Signed By: Felix Feliz/Trevor Schumm/Chris Kemp.

    TRACK RECORD: Ona was arguably Cuba's best hitter for his age as an amateur and signed with the Padres for $7 million in 2016. He battled a host of injuries after signing and had season-ending right shoulder surgery in May 2019, but he returned healthy in 2020 and starred at the alternate training site. The Padres called him up in September and gave him four starts at designated hitter.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Ona is a thick, bulky hitter with massive raw power. His brute strength and solid bat speed produce towering drives to all fields, especially the opposite way to right-center. Ona's swing was previously stiff and prevented him from making enough contact, but his swing looked much looser post-surgery. He showed the ability to wait back on breaking balls and handle varied stuff, although he's still extremely aggressive and has big holes in his swing, particularly against elevated fastballs or anything inside. Ona's bulk makes him a below-average defender with below-average speed in the outfield. He flashed above-average arm strength before surgery.

    THE FUTURE: Ona has a better chance to reach his power with his looser swing. His outlook for playing time will improve if the National League permanently adopts the DH.

  11. 11. Reggie Lawson | RHP
    Reggie Lawson
    Born: Aug 2, 1997
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 214
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Victorville, Calif., 2016 (2nd round supplemental).
    Signed By: Jeff Stevens.

    TRACK RECORD: A touted amateur drafted in the supplemental second round in 2016, Lawson interspersed flashes of brilliance with rough outings before missing most of 2019 with an elbow strain. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection and returned to make three dominant appearances in the Arizona Fall League, but the PRP didn't hold and he had Tommy John surgery in March 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Lawson looks like a pitcher straight out of central casting with a strong, well-proportioned frame and a loose, athletic delivery. He tops his three-pitch mix with a 93-96 mph fastball with late life he holds deep into games. His 76-80 mph curveball has steadily added power and bite to get swings and misses and his mid-80s changeup flashes above-average with sink at the bottom of the zone. Lawson's stuff is loud, but his secondaries and his control vary widely, leading to dominant outings mixed with disastrous ones. He's at his best in big games.

    THE FUTURE: Lawson has the ingredients of a mid-rotation starter, but he has to get healthy and find consistency. He may return in mid-2021 depending on his rehab progress.

  12. 12. Efrain Contreras | RHP
    Efrain Contreras
    Born: Jan 2, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'10" Wt.: 185
    Drafted/Signed: Mexico, 2017.
    Signed By: Emmanuel Rangel/Bill McLaughlin.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres purchased Contreras' rights for $50,000 from the Mexican League's Veracruz franchise in 2017. He jumped on radars when he finished eighth in the low Class A Midwest League in strikeouts in his full-season debut in 2019 and took a leap in 2020, where he earned raves as the Padres' top pitcher in instructional league. He left one of his final instructs starts with an elbow injury, however, and had Tommy John surgery in November.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Contreras long showed the ability to throw three pitches for strikes and has steadily improved his fastball velocity. Strong in his square, stocky build, Contreras' fastball now sits 92-93 mph and touches 95 with carry up in the zone. His combination of velocity, life and pinpoint command makes his fastball a swing-and-miss weapon, and he confidently challenges hitters with a hint of bravado. Contreras drops his sharp, downer curveball in the strike zone in any count and shows the makings of an above-average low-80s changeup with deception and fade. He fills up the strike zone with plus control and works quickly with a composed, business-like demeanor.

    THE FUTURE: The Padres felt confident Contreras would pitch in the majors and be a potential back-of-the-rotation starter based on what he showed in instructional league. He'll be out all of 2021 recovering and is set to return in 2022.

  13. 13. Justin Lange | RHP
    Justin Lange
    Born: Sep 11, 2001
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 220
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Llano, Texas (1st round supplemental).
    Signed By: Kevin Ham (Padres).

    TRACK RECORD: Lange topped out in the low 90s during the Area Code Games entering his senior year of high school, but came back sitting 95-98 mph in the spring and rocketed up draft boards. The Padres drafted him 34th overall and signed him for $2 million to forgo a Dallas Baptist commitment. Lange joined the alternate training site after signing but was limited by shoulder fatigue in instructional league.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Lange has a projectable 6-foot-4 frame and is extraordinarily athletic. He originally committed to DBU as an infielder and is a plus-plus runner. Lange's fastball sits 94-95 mph, touches 98 with ease and has clipped 100 mph. He doesn't quite have command of it yet, but that should improve as he grows into his long limbs and gets stronger. Lange's secondaries are works in progress. He flashes an above-average slider at 86-89 mph but gets under the ball too often and has rarely used his mid-80s changeup. His control of his secondaries is behind his fastball control.

    THE FUTURE: Lange is a bit of a lottery ticket. His athleticism and velocity are a good foundation, and the Padres will see if his secondaries and control come along.

  14. 14. Joshua Mears | OF
    Joshua Mears
    Born: Feb 21, 2001
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 230
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Federal Way, Wash., 2019 (2nd round).
    Signed By: Justin Baughman.

    TRACK RECORD: Mears stood out for his physicality at the 2018 Area Code Games and showed prolific power throughout high school. The Padres drafted him 48th overall in 2019 and signed him for $1 million. Mears impressed in his pro debut in the Rookie-level Arizona League, but he suffered a broken hamate bone in 2020 that kept him off the field until the end of instructional league.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Mears is built like a major league slugger at a chiseled 6-foot-3, 230 pounds. He destroys baseballs with plus-plus raw power and has already posted exit velocities as high as 117 mph-- which would have been fourth-highest in the major leagues in 2020. Mears' power is monstrous, but it's a question how much he'll get to it. He has rarely faced good velocity and his swing length and pitch recognition need improvement for him to be an average hitter. Mears is athletic for his size but projects to slow down as he gets older. He fits in right field with his above-average arm strength.

    THE FUTURE: Mears was committed to Purdue to study engineering and took college classes while still in high school. That intelligence and work ethic should help him get the most from his abilities.

  15. 15. Jorge Mateo | OF/2B
    Jorge Mateo
    Born: Jun 23, 1995
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 182
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2012.
    Signed By: Juan Rosario (Yankees).

    TRACK RECORD: Mateo was a top prospect when the Yankees traded him and two others to the A's for Sonny Gray at the 2017 trade deadline. Mateo's bat never came around, and the A's traded him to the Padres for a player to be named last June. He appeared in 22 big league games, mostly as a pinch-runner.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Mateo is one of the fastest players in baseball. He's capable of stealing a base at any time and can score on shallow balls in play that others can't. Mateo's offensive value derives almost entirely from his plus-plus grade speed. He has shown flashes of a quick, direct swing, but overall he's a bottom of the scale hitter who is tentative against velocity and doesn't recognize spin. He does have some gap power when he connects. Mateo came up as a shortstop but is better in the outfield, where he covers a lot of ground and his plus arm is less encumbered by iffy accuracy.

    THE FUTURE: Mateo is purely a pinch-runner and defensive replacement, but he can create runs and add value at the bottom of a roster. He'll fill that role for the Padres in 2021.

  16. 16. Reiss Knehr | RHP
    Reiss Knehr
    Born: Nov 3, 1996
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 205
    Drafted/Signed: Fordham, 2018 (20th round).
    Signed By: Jake Koenig.

    TRACK RECORD: Knehr was a standout pitcher at Fordham and was the Rams' second baseman or designated hitter on days he didn't pitch. The Padres liked his athleticism and drafted him in the 20th round in 2018. Knehr struggled with an aggressive assignment to high Class A Lake Elsinore in his first full season, but he made adjustments and was the Padres' biggest breakout performer at instructional league in 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Knehr's stuff has improved now that he is focused on pitching only. His fastball sat in the low 90s in college and now comfortably sits 93-96 mph. His slider has ticked up from a low-80s pitch to an average 84-87 mph offering with shape and depth, and he is increasingly showing a feel for upper-80s changeup. Knehr has a history of walks and his control is inconsistent, but he's gradually challenging hitters and throwing more strikes. He is a good athlete with a big, durable frame and a quick arm.

    THE FUTURE: Knehr's upward trend has the Padres excited. He may see Double-A in 2021.

  17. 17. Mason Thompson | RHP
    Mason Thompson
    Born: Feb 20, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'7" Wt.: 223
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Round Rock, Texas, 2016 (3rd round).
    Signed By: Matt Schaffner.

    TRACK RECORD: Thompson had Tommy John surgery in high school and pitched only one inning his senior year. The Padres still drafted him in the third round in 2016 based on his pre-surgery success. Injuries continued to afflict Thompson in pro ball—he had biceps tendinitis and shoulder inflammation in 2017, a triceps strain in 2018 and elbow issues in 2019—and have contributed to a career 5.08 ERA. But Thompson used the 2020 shutdown to get healthy, and he turned heads at instructional league.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Thompson has filled out his 6-foot-7 frame and now sits 94-98 mph on his fastball in short stints. His main secondary is a power slider at 88-90 mph that gets swings and misses. Thompson's 12-to-6 curveball and fading changeup each flashed above-average in the past, but they've taken a back seat to his fastball and slider. Thompson can only locate pitches to his glove side, but that's enough to dominate righthanded batters in 1-2 inning bursts. Lefties see him better and present a difficult matchup.

    THE FUTURE: Thompson is likely a reliever moving forward. If he can stay healthy, he has a chance to pitch in middle or late relief.

  18. 18. Dauris Valdez | RHP
    Dauris Valdez
    Born: Oct 22, 1995
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'8" Wt.: 254
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2016.
    Signed By: Chris Kemp/Alvin Duran.

    TRACK RECORD: Valdez was lightly regarded as an amateur and signed with the Padres for just $10,000 late in the 2015-16 international signing period. He exploded physically into a 6-foot-8, 254-pound behemoth and quickly rose through the minors as a hard-throwing reliever. Valdez spent all of 2019 at Double-A and pitched at instructional league in 2020 before heading to the Dominican Winter League.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Valdez is an enormous human being whose nickname is "Exxon" Valdez, after the oil tanker. He is an intimidating presence on the mound and blows hitters away with a fastball that averages 98-99 mph and touches 101-102 mph out of a short arm action. Valdez's slider has transformed from a loopy, 78-80 mph pitch into a hard, 87-88 mph power offering with late snap to give him a needed secondary offering. His 89-90 changeup with hard sink has also come along to be a solid pitch. Both of his secondaries flash plus at their best but need more consistency. Valdez's control is below-average, but he throws enough strikes to be an effective late-game reliever.

    THE FUTURE: Valdez has a chance to be one of the hardest-throwing relievers in the majors. He is in position to make his major league debut in 2021.

  19. 19. Anderson Espinoza | RHP
    Anderson Espinoza
    Born: Mar 9, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 190
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2014.
    Signed By: Eddie Romero/Manny Padron (Red Sox).

    TRACK RECORD: Espinoza was one of baseball's top pitching prospects when the Red Sox traded him to the Padres for Drew Pomeranz at the 2016 all-star break. MLB later suspended Padres general manager A.J. Preller for 30 days after ruling he did not disclose Pomeranz's complete medical history to Boston. Espinoza, however, is the one whose injuries have been a bigger problem. He's had two Tommy John surgeries and has not pitched in a game since 2016.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Despite having not pitched in four seasons, Espinoza will still be only 22 when spring training begins and has shown signs of his arm strength returning. He returned to the mound at the alternate training site and his fastball sat 94-96 mph and touched 98 mph with little effort during instructional league. He threw his fastball for strikes and, most importantly, had no setbacks. Espinoza's secondaries have further to go. He has not spun the ball well since returning and has yet to regain a feel for his once-dominant changeup after the long layoff.

    THE FUTURE: Espinoza's youth and arm strength remain intriguing after all this time. Staying healthy will be his primary goal in 2021.

  20. 20. Victor Acosta | SS
    Victor Acosta
    Born: Jun 10, 2004
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 165
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2021.
    Signed By: Alvin Duran/Trevor Schumm/Chris Kemp.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres signed one of the best true shortstops in the class with Victor Acosta from the Dominican Republic.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Acosta is 5-foot-11, 165 pounds and moves around gracefully at shortstop, where he's light on his feet with soft hands and a plus arm. He reads the ball well off the bat with a nose for the ball, showing quick actions but with the ability to slow the game down and play under control, showing all the attributes to develop into a plus defender. A slightly above-average runner, Acosta is a switch-hitter with quick hands at the plate. He has a slasher type stroke that early on was more advanced from the left side, though his righthanded swing has caught up to the point where some scouts think that he has more impact now. Acosta isn't that big but he does have some sneaky power for his size to drive the ball out occasionally during BP thanks to his bat speed. He trained with Hector Evertz.

    THE FUTURE: Still 16 years old, Acosta is years away and will likely make his initial debut in the Dominican Summer League.

  21. 21. Samuel Zavala | OF
    Samuel Zavala
    Born: Jul 15, 2004
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2021.
    Signed By: Luis Prieto/Trevor Schumm/Chris Kemp.

    TRACK RECORD: Zavala was one of the better pure hitters in the international class. He's still 16 until July 15, making him one of the younger players in the class, but his baseball IQ is advanced for his age, especially at the plate.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Zavala has a loose, rhythmic stroke from the left side with good sequence. Zavala has a knack for barreling the ball against live pitching, driving the ball well the opposite way already. As he's gotten stronger, he's added more power with the loft in his swing to tap into in games. If everything clicks for Zavala, he could end up with above-average hit and power tools, which would fit well in either corner spot. The Padres have challenged Zavala to work at his speed, though, and he's an average runner now, so he should get reps in center field as well as the corners. He moves around well in the outfield and has good instincts with a 55 arm that could become plus as he gets stronger.

    THE FUTURE: While he probably goes to a corner long term, the attributes are in place for him to develop into an above-average defender there. Zavala will make his pro debut in 2021 in the Dominican Summer League.

  22. 22. Tirso Ornelas | OF
    Tirso Ornelas
    Born: Mar 11, 2000
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 200
    Drafted/Signed: Mexico, 2016.
    Signed By: Chris Kemp/Bill McLaughlin.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres purchased Ornelas' rights from the Mexican League for $1.5 million and pushed him quickly up their system. He stumbled at high Class A Lake Elsinore in 2019, batting .220 with one home run and while being demoted at midseason. Ornelas showed signs of breaking out with a new swing at the end of the year and carried it forward in the Mexican Winter League in 2020, but his time there was cut short when he broke his forearm diving for a ball in the outfield.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Ornelas is a physical lefthanded hitter with exceptional strike-zone recognition and above-average raw power. His swing got long, slow and steep during his 2019 struggles, so the Padres reset his hand position to get him quicker to the ball. Ornelas is not particularly twitchy so he needs to keep his swing short. He swings at the right pitches and has the strength to drive the ball when he stays on plane and finds the barrel. Ornelas moves well for his size and is playable in right field. His arm strength previously flashed above-average but has regressed.

    THE FUTURE: Ornelas' swing improvements were a promising first step. They need to hold for him to rise in 2021.

  23. 23. Jagger Haynes | LHP
    Jagger Haynes
    Born: Sep 20, 2002
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 170
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Cerro Gordo, N.C. (5th round).
    Signed By: Jake Koenig.

    TRACK RECORD: Haynes went under the radar in tiny Cerro Gordo, N.C. and pitched only one game before the coronavirus pandemic canceled his high school senior season. Padres righthander Seth Frankoff, who also lives in Cerro Gordo, worked out with Haynes during the shutdown and recommended him to the Padres' scouting staff, who knew Haynes from previous showcases. The Padres drafted Haynes in the fifth round and signed him for an above-slot $300,000 to forgo a North Carolina commitment.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Haynes is a tall, projectable lefthander who was the youngest pitcher selected in the 2020 draft. His fastball ranges from 87-93 mph with running life out of a clean, athletic delivery, and his wide shoulders portend future strength and velocity gains. Haynes' breaking ball is slurvy and he'll need to tighten it, but it shows average or better potential. He decently sells his fringy changeup with light fade. Haynes has the delivery and athleticism for average or better control, though he'll need time and experience to get there. He is an edgy competitor who isn't fazed by falling behind in the count.

    THE FUTURE: Haynes is all projection but has lots of promising ingredients. The Padres think he could be a draft steal.

  24. 24. Victor Lizarraga | RHP
    Victor Lizarraga
    Born: Nov 30, 2003
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: Mexico, 2021

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres signed one of the top pitchers in the international class in Lizarraga, who trained at the Mazatlan academy in Mexico.

    SCOUTING REPORT: He's 6-foot-4, 180 pounds, with a ton of room on his long, lean frame to add weight and throw harder. Last year he pitched at 88-93, with a chance to throw in the mid 90s or better in the near future. He has a starter's repertoire with feel for two secondary offerings, led by a mid-to-upper 70s curveball with good shape and depth that's a potential out pitch, along with a solid changeup for his age. Lizarraga's feel for pitching is also advanced for his peer group.

    THE FUTURE: Though still years away, Lizarraga’s knack for pitching could allow him to move more quickly than others in his age group. He will make his pro debut this summer in 2021.

  25. 25. Brandon Valenzuela | C
    Brandon Valenzuela
    Born: Oct 2, 2000
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 230
    Drafted/Signed: Mexico, 2017.
    Signed By: Bill McLaughlin/Trevor Schumm/Chris Kemp.

    TRACK RECORD: The Padres scouted Mexico heavily during the 2017-18 international signing period and purchased Valenzuela's rights for $100,000 from the Mexico City Red Devils. The switch-hitting catcher grew three inches after signing and impressed with more walks (34) than strikeouts (32) in the Rookie-level Arizona League. He earned plaudits during 2020 instructional league for his ability to catch older, more advanced pitchers.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Valenzuela is a physical backstop with premium defensive ability for his age. He's an excellent framer who takes low pitches and turns them into strikes, records pop times in the 1.9s with his above-average arm and is often the smartest player on the field. He remembers hitters' tendencies and expertly guides his pitchers through difficult situations. Valenzuela has a simple swing from both sides of the plate. His bat speed is limited, but he doesn't chase outside the strike zone and draws enough walks to be an offensive contributor. His strength gives him a chance to reach double-digit home runs at maturity.

    THE FUTURE: Valenzuela has the look and defensive attributes of a future major league catcher. He'll move to full-season ball in 2021.

  26. 26. Brayan Medina | RHP
    Brayan Medina
    Born: Oct 6, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2019.
    Signed By: Luis Prieto/Chris Kemp.

    TRACK RECORD: Medina separated himself as Venezuela’s top pitcher in the 2019 international class and signed with the Padres for $700,00 on July 2. His expected pro debut in 2020 was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, but he took the mound at instructional league and impressed as one of the youngest players on the Padres roster.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Medina already boasts loud stuff at 18 years old and has the athleticism, arm speed and physicality to continue adding velocity. His fastball comfortably sits 92-94 mph, touches 95, and some observers think he’ll throw 100 mph in the future as he fills out and gets stronger. Medina’s slider shows excellent spin characteristics and flashes above-average with sharp bite, and he also shows feel for a changeup with late fade. Medina has an energetic delivery and will overthrow and lose the strike zone at times, but he’s a plus athlete who should make adjustments as he matures.

    THE FUTURE: Medina’s arm strength and athleticism hold a lot of promise. He is set to make his professional debut in 2021.

  27. 27. Mason Feole | LHP
    Mason Feole
    Born: Aug 28, 1998
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 194
    Drafted/Signed: Connecticut, 2019 (11th round).
    Signed By: Jake Koenig.

    TRACK RECORD: Feole finished as Connecticut’s all-time strikeout leader after a decorated college career, which included pitching 11 scoreless innings for USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team. Injury concerns caused him to fall in the 2019 draft—he missed the start of his junior season with a shoulder strain and showed diminished stuff when he returned—and he had Tommy John surgery shortly after the Padres picked him in the 11th round. Feole returned to the mound at instructional league in 2020 and showed a big uptick in his stuff, leading to a breakout showing.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Feole’s fastball dropped to 86-90 mph during his junior year, but after rehabbing from surgery he arrived at instructs sitting 94-98 mph in relief. He complements that enhanced fastball with a high-spin, 12-to-6 curveball with good depth in the mid 70s that gets swings and misses. Feole mostly lives on those two pitches. His changeup showed promise in college, but it’s not a significant part of his arsenal. Feole’s effortful, old-school delivery features a high leg kick and adds some deception, but it also leads to high walk totals and below-average control.

    THE FUTURE: The Padres see Feole’s future as a reliever and note he resembles Brad Hand. If he can stay healthy, he has a chance to emerge as a late-inning option.

  28. 28. Ivan Castillo | 2B/SS
    Ivan Castillo
    Born: May 30, 1995
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'9" Wt.: 179
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2011.
    Signed By: Ramon Pena/Felix Nivar (Indians).

    TRACK RECORD: The younger brother of former Cubs pitcher Lendy Castillo, Ivan bounced around a bit before finding his footing. He signed with the Indians in 2011, was drafted by the Blue Jays in the minor league phase of the 2017 Rule 5 Draft and signed with the Padres as a minor league free agent in 2019. He found his third organization was the charm and won the Texas League batting title (.313) at Double-A Amarillo in 2019. His only 2020 action came in the Dominican Winter League, where he hit .273 with a .360 on-base percentage.

    SCOUTING REPORT: A late bloomer, Castillo has found his niche as a reliable player who isn’t flashy but gets the job done. He’s the rare switch-hitter who is productive from both sides of the plate, although he is stronger righthanded. He handles velocity, rarely strikes out and has tremendous instincts in the batter’s box. Castillo lacks power and rarely walks, but he consistently gets the bat to the ball and finds a way to get on base. Castillo’s average speed plays up with his excellent baserunning skills, helping him be successful on 74% of stolen base attempts in his career. He is a tick above average defender at second base and shortstop with an average arm, and he has also played third base, center field and left field.

    THE FUTURE: Castillo has the well-rounded skillset to be a potential utilityman. He’ll begin 2021 at Triple-A El Paso.

  29. 29. Pedro Avila | RHP
    Pedro Avila
    Born: Jan 14, 1997
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 210
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2014.
    Signed By: German Robles (Nationals).

    TRACK RECORD: Avila signed with the Nationals for $50,000 in 2014 and was traded to the Padres for Derek Norris after the 2016 season. He finished among the organization’s strikeout leaders in both 2017 and 2018 and received his first big league callup in April 2019, when he pitched 5.1 strong innings in his lone start. He suffered an elbow strain that eventually led to Tommy John surgery in August, however, and missed the rest of the season and all of 2020 recovering.

    SCOUTING REPORT: When healthy, Avila throws three quality pitches for strikes. He has a strong, sturdy frame that allows him to hold his 92-93 mph fastball deep in games and will touch 95. Avila’s best pitch is his curveball. It’s a plus offering at 73-77 mph with big break that freezes hitters and gets both called strikes and swings and misses. He rounds out his arsenal with an 82-84 mph changeup that shows above-average potential. Avila gets in trouble when he falls in love with his secondaries or throws his pitches out of sequence, but he’s a good athlete with a clean delivery and racks up strikeouts when he’s on.

    THE FUTURE: Avila is slated to return in 2021. If his stuff returns intact, he has a chance to be a spot starter or swingman.

  30. 30. Lake Bachar | RHP
    Lake Bachar
    Born: Jun 3, 1995
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 219
    Drafted/Signed: Wisconsin-Whitewater, 2016 (5th round).
    Signed By: Troy Hoerner.

    TRACK RECORD: Bachar was the kicker/punter on Division III Wisconsin-Whitewater’s football team before joining the school’s baseball team as a junior. He played both sports for one year before focusing on baseball exclusively as a senior, after which the Padres drafted him in the fifth round on the strength of his fresh right arm. Bachar worked his way to Double-A and was one of the top starting pitchers in the Texas League in 2019, but he suffered an elbow injury that limited him in 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Bachar is a good athlete with a competitive streak on the mound. His fastball sits 92-93 mph as a starter and has touched 95. Bachar’s main weapons are his secondary pitches. He generates high spin rates on both his slider and curveball, with his slider flashing above-average and his curveball average. Bachar attacks hitters aggressively and throws plenty of strikes. His command is average, which is impressive for a pitcher with his lack of experience.

    THE FUTURE: Bachar has spent time both starting and relieving, but most observers think he’d be best in the bullpen, where his stuff would tick up. He’ll see Triple-A in 2021.

View Players 11-30

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