2019 San Diego Padres Top 10 Prospects Chat

Image credit: Fernando Tatis Jr. (Photo by Rob Tringali/MLB Photos/Getty Images)

Click here to see the Padres Top 10. 

Kyle Glaser: What’s up everybody. Thanks for joining me in the Padres chat. Obviously this is a tremendous system with a lot of talented players, and it was a fun one to watch and do the leg work on this year. Let’s get started.

John (Champaign, IL): 

    That’s a strong top 10. How close was Baez and is he more likely to end up in the bullpen at this point?

Kyle Glaser: Michel Baez wasn’t far at all and was firmly in the conversation at No. 10. What separated him from Quantrill at 10 ultimately is Quantrill is showing three ML-caliber pitches, while Baez is really only showing two right now. That, plus concerns on just how much Baez stiffened up and lost his direction to the plate, have a majority of evaluators now projecting him to the bullpen.

William (Toronto): 

    I have seen Baez ranked much higher and I thought his numbers looked ok last season. Aside from system depth is there a specific reason for his drop? Does he still profile as a starter? Number 3? 2019 debut?

Kyle Glaser: To follow up on Baez, there are a lot of reasons for his drop. He dropped from 94-98 to 90-94 and touching a 96, he was visibly stiffer and less athletic in his delivery this year compared to last—which happens to bigger guys sometimes and is always a concern with them—and his direction to the plate was kind of a mess and made both of his breaking balls largely ineffective. If he can rediscover the athleticism, explosiveness and arm speed he showed at Fort Wayne in 2017, he can bounce right back up and become a top 10 guy in this system with a starter future. If he stays on the track he showed last year, he’s a two-pitch reliever with a fastball and changeup who probably debuts in 2020.

Jason (SD): 

    If you removed the Padres top 20 prospects and said there new top 10 was #20-30. Where would the system rank?

Kyle Glaser: Interesting question. 20-30 is a lot of interesting but unproven guys in the lower levels who project as contributors but not studs. It would probably be a bottom 5 system in baseball, as much as there is talent there to dream on.

Sam (NYC): 

    THIS IS THE CHAT I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR!!!!! Please, tell us, the Friar Faithful (the East Coast Contingent), what we have in Jeisson Rosario, Tino Ornelas and Xavier Edwards – Also, Michel Baez: would he be better off coming out of the bullpen instead of starting? Could he be a closer? Thanks!!

Kyle Glaser: Haha thanks Sam. Love the enthusiasm. In Rosario you have a crazy athletic center fielder who controls the strike zone and profiles as a potential leadoff hitter down the road (but he still needs to add strength). In Ornelas you have a potential middle of the order power hitter who posts high OBPs, but he’s going to have to work on some swing deficiencies that led to a lot of weak popups to the left side last year. And in Edwards you’ve got a twitchy, savvy middle infielder who makes a ton of contact and can fly, also projecting as a top-of-the-order type. Now, the odds of all three reaching their ceilings and becoming these guys is very, very slim, so exercise some caution, but the potential is there. As for Baez, I would leave him as a starter for now to see if he can rediscover his previous self. But if August rolls around and nothing is getting better (or it’s getting worse) I’d stick him in the bullpen and let him loose. He has potential closer velocity, but most closers have a dirty slider to go with their fastballs, and Baez’s slider isn’t that, so that would have to change.

Dustin (Winnipeg): 

    Naylor and Quantrill in the top 10?! Did a lot of people/other outlets really sour on these guys or is this system not as deep/great as this Padre fan had hoped? I was expecting to see Baez and Weathers with Edwards as the surprise guy at #10.

Kyle Glaser: Media outlets seem to like Naylor less than actual scouts. Naylor got probably the most consistent positive reports this year of any Padres position player (including Tatis), and the only guy to consistently get plus hit, plus power thrown on him (not even Tatis got that.) Most teams consider him a DH only, but even NL teams say they’d want him because of his bat and they’d figure the rest out. He’s a slam dunk top 10, and a couple of other organizations actually have him higher in the Padres system on their pref lists. Quantrill struggled but the way he rebounded at AAA – three quality pitches and the competitive fire—re-boosted his stock at the end. His arsenal is more well-rounded than Baez and just straight better than Weathers’. Considering he’s got a better arsenal than both AND is closer to the majors, it really wasn’t that close a call.

Dustin (Winnipeg): 

    How many of these guys crack the top 100?

Kyle Glaser: I feel pretty safe saying the top 9.

Mike R (Lockport, New York): 

    Am I correct to assume that Tirso Ornelas, Jeisson Rosario, and Estury Ruiz are in the 11-20 range ? Do they all project to be regulars ? Also, what about Eguy Rosario, no one ever talks about him

Kyle Glaser: Ornelas and Jeisson Rosario are right around there, Ruiz is actually lower. His tools are exciting, but he doesn’t make adjustments at the plate and there is very little belief he’ll hit at higher levels with his swing and approach. He’s got a lot more work to do than I sense Padres fans realize. Eguy did OK for himself at Elsinore at 18 and packs a lot of sock for a little guy. He doesn’t rank yet, but he has our attention and I’ll be interested to see what he does next year when he possibly repeats Elsinore and will still be one of the league’s youngest players.

Dustin (Winnipeg): 

    In your opinion, is this the best farm system in baseball?

Kyle Glaser: Yup. The top 7 would all be worthy No. 1 prospects in about half of the systems in baseball, and Nos. 8 and 9 would be No. 1 for some of the bottom systems. On top of that, the group from 10 through about 22 would be Top 10 prospects in all but a few other systems in the game. Unmatched top-level talent + unmatched depth = the best system in baseball.

Matt (New York): 

    Was Ryan Weathers in consideration for the top ten? Also what type of upside do you think he has going forward?

Kyle Glaser: He got some consideration, and you have to be impressed with him holding his own in the Midwest League three months out of high school, but ultimately the stuff is a little short compared to some of the guys above him. It’s a 90-91, pitchability type of arm. He’s mature and poised and has a well-rounded arsenal, it’s just probably more of a No. 4 or 5 starter at the end of the day. He has time to surpass that projection. We’ll see.

Barry (Phoenix): 

    How far was Luis Patiño from making the top 10? I’ve read good reports on him so I’m surprised he didn’t make it.

Kyle Glaser: A: Umm…Luis Patino is No. 7 on the list https://www.baseballamerica.com/teams/2017-san-diego-padres/organizational/?year=2019

Andrew Korol (Korol’s Kove): 

    How close was Buddy Reed to making this list?

Kyle Glaser: Buddy Reed is an incredible athlete who can make game-changing plays in the field and on the basepaths. He also deserves a ton of credit for completely overhauling his stance and swing in order to get in a position to be successful. He’s a great dude and is in the Top 30. At the same time, even when he was going well in the California League, every opposing coach and evaluator in the league made clear he was going to have a difficult time once he started facing advanced pitchers who could actually put their pitches where they wanted, and that’s exactly what happened in Double-A. Fall League scouts saw the same thing, even though he did well there. There’s a lot of holes in the swing and the pitch recognition is still pretty poor. Very few believe he’ll hit enough to be more than an up-and-down guy. Thus, he was not close to making the Top 10.

Scott (Divine City, Providence RI): 

    How far away are Gore and Morejon from one another? How concerning is Morejon’s tricep injury?

Kyle Glaser: They’re pretty close, as you’ll see when the Top 100 comes out. More than the triceps injury in itself, what’s more concerning is just the pattern of Morejon not being able to stay healthy through his seasons. Even coming out of Cuba there were durability concerns with him. Big picture, the trend is concerning more than that one singular injury in and of itself.

Andrew (Murphy): 

    Are there any other recent examples of a farm system this deep?

Kyle Glaser: Plenty. One example is the 2015 Cubs Top 30 with Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Jorge Soler, Kyle Schwarber, Carl Edwards, Albert Almora, Gleyber Torres, Eloy Jimenez, Dylan Cease, Jeimer Candelario, Vic Caratini, Dan Vogelbach, Billy McKinney, Paul Blackburn, Duane Underwood, Rob Zastryzny, Pierce Johnson and Jen Ho-Tseng. That’s 18 big leaguers or soon to be big leaguers out of 30, with a bunch of All-Stars or first division regulars at the top of the list. Now before Padres fans see that and declare a World Series in their future like the Cubs, I would also point you to the 2013 Marlins, which is one of the richest systems of the decade, and a confluence of factors at the big league level meant they never even posted a winning season: Jose Fernandez, Christian Yelich, Marcell Ozuna, J.T. Realmuto, Andrew Heaney, Jake Marisnick, Jose Urena, AJ Ramos, Derek Dietrich, Adeiny Hechavarria, Adam Conley, Justin Nicolino, Rob Brantly – that’s 13 of their top 14, all became big leaguers, and four of them stars. That’s insane. Not to mention other guys lower in the system like Austin Barnes. That group joined a major league team that had a 22-year-old Giancarlo Stanton, a 24-year old Logan Morrison, a 22-year-old Nate Eovaldi and a 22-year-old Brad Hand. Those Marlins teams should have been great, but incompetent ownership plus tragedy meant they got nothing. The Padres can only hope and pray they have as many successes as that Marlins system had. They also need to understand that even if they have that many players hit, there is a lot more that needs to be done to become a playoff team. The Padres have an excellent farm system, but by no means is it unprecedented, and it’s going to take more than just these players hitting alone to actually get back on the winning track.

Andrew (Los Angeles): 

    Can Tirso Ornelas be special?

Kyle Glaser: Yes. There is a real chance he becomes an offensive force who provides the kind of lefthanded power the Padres haven’t had since Adrian Gonzalez. At the same time, he’s young kid who still has a good bit to work on before he gets there, so give it time.

Justin (Tampa, FL): 

    What did scouts say about Reggie Lawson this year, and will he be in the teens?

Kyle Glaser: At his best Reggie Lawson looks like a bonafide regular in the rotation, but consistency still eludes him. He shows up for the big games (the On Deck Classic at Petco, the game in Elsinore he piggybacked off of Lucchesi with Hedges catching and AJ Preller in attendance) and now it’s just about getting him to be that guy every start. The potential is there, but scouts often saw a different guy depending on the day he started. Tightening that up and being consistent from start to start will be a big next step in his development, along with fine-tuning that slider he showed in the On Deck Classic.

Daniel (Hayward): 

    How is Chris Paddack’s curveball? What’s his ceiling if everything comes together? What is he if his curveball doesn’t improve?

Kyle Glaser: It’s not a good pitch just to be frank. There’s a reason you’ll see him throw it four times in an 85-pitch outing, or seven times in an 85-pitch outing. The hope is he can land it in the strike zone early in counts from time to time just to keep some hitters honest. The only ML righthander who throws a breaking ball as infrequently as Paddack does is Kyle Hendricks – that’s the upside in terms of role: A No. 3 on a contending team who might reach an All-Star Game or win an ERA title at his peak. That’s a pretty darn good pitcher, and frankly would be better than anything the Padres have had in a while. Otherwise, he might end up sort of like an Alex Cobb, a fine No. 4 who does most of his damage with his fastball and changeup. Either way, there is a big league starter in there that will help the Padres is some form or fashion.

Andrew (Los Angeles): 

    How much separates Morejon, Paddack and Patino at #5-#6? Do they all have front of the rotation upside?

Kyle Glaser: Paddack is seen pretty much as a No. 3-4 for some of the reasons stated earlier. Morejon and Patino you can dream No. 2 starter or more, but a big part of being that guy is holding up over a full season and being a bit of a workhorse. Doubts that Morejon can do that have most penciling him in as a No. 3. Patino is so young with so much more growth left, it’s tough to be that definitive on him right now

Frank (Indianapolis, IN): 

    I’ll just say hello and wait for your answer. You already know the question, Kyle. Peace out.

Kyle Glaser: Haha thanks Frank, but someone already beat you to it. (Answer above)

Ben (Denver, CO): 

    Why didn’t you guys save the best system for last? We Rockies’ faithful thought for sure today would be our day.

Kyle Glaser: Scheduling and personnel availability. Sorry about that. Just gotta wait two more days

Daniel (Hayward): 

    Xavier Edwards have any chance at making the top 100?

Kyle Glaser: Right now? No. Not close. But in two years could I see it? Sure

J.P. (Springfield, IL): 

    Gore had his share of struggles on the mound last year. Was this strictly because of his blisters, or something more as well?

Kyle Glaser: It was the blisters. Everything pointed back to that. That’s why the breaking stuff played down and the fastball command was inconsistent. He just couldn’t grip or release the baseball the way he needed to. If they come back or stay away next year will be one of the most important things for Padres fans to watch next year, in terms of paying attention to the farm system.

Zac (NYC): 

    What are you hearing about Anderson Espinoza? Do people feel he will get back to the elite prospect status he once held?

Kyle Glaser: He was throwing bullpens around Thanksgiving and is expected to be ready at the start of spring training. The stuff looked good in those sessions, but building back up and being able to hold that stuff against live hitters is a different challenge entirely. He has a chance to return to that elite prospect status, but getting back on the mound in game situations and staying on it is step No. 1.

Ryan (Abingdon, MD): 

    Do you think Gabriel Arias will ever be a league average bat?

Kyle Glaser: Soooo….I personally have seen enough that I hold out some hope that he can eventually be. That said, I’m in the minority camp.

Ken (Lakewood CA): 

    Thanks for chatting Kyle. What are your thoughts on 18 year old Xavier Edwards? Exciting future? Thanks.

Kyle Glaser: He’s a good player. Really exciting combination of athleticism and baseball instincts. Normally you get one but not the other from teenagers, so to see someone with both of them is pretty fun. I don’t think anyone should ever expect a ton of power, but an old-school leadoff hitter type with speed to burn while playing the middle infield – that’s a valuable player. His swing works, he has a plan up there…now we just have to see how it all works in full-season ball, but I’m optimistic it will

Ken (Lakewood CA): 

    Gore probably has the highest ceiling of all the Padre pitching prospects. But the blister issue is concerning. That said, does Patino have the highest ceiling of the remaining many SD mound prospects? Thanks.

Kyle Glaser: Morejon is actually the higher ceiling of the two. He’s got three pitches that are out pitches (Patino is at two right now, although he could grow into a third), and he’s got a similar power arm but from the left side. Now, if we looked back 10 years from now and Patino ends up having the best career of all three of them, I wouldn’t be shocked. But at this exact moment in time, Morejon is generally seen as the highest ceiling of anyone not named Gore (and some think he has the same ceiling)

Zac (NYC): 

    What can we expect from Ryan Weathers?

Kyle Glaser: A poised, mature lefty who doesn’t have explosive stuff but knows how to get outs. He might look a lot like Logan Allen in three years.

Carlos (Frankfurt, KY): 

    How many of the Padres’ 11-20 list would make it into the weakest system’s top 10? (Presumably the Cubs?)

Kyle Glaser: Oooh fun question. Looking at how we have everything lined up, I would say he Padres 11-23 would make up 13 of the weakest system’s top 18 prospects. Nos 11 and 12 would probably be Nos. 2 and 3 in that system, if not No. 1 and 3.

Jake (Minneapolis, MN): 

    How close was Potts? Is he strictly a 3B, or is a switch indicated?

Kyle Glaser: Potts is strictly a 3B and a good one, although he can flip over to 1B as needed. He’s a good prospect with a good bit to like, but he was fairly clearly a shade below the Top 10 tier.

Fernando Tatis Jr. (At the gym): 

    Realistically, could I break camp with the Friars if I manage to knock A.J.’s socks off after spring training ends?

Kyle Glaser: It’s possible, but I don’t know if it’s wise. For all of Tatis’ gifts, there are still some offensive things he could shore up and he would benefit from seeing from ex-big leaguers in AAA.

Josh (LA): 

    How far off was Michel Baez, and in retrospect were you guys too bullish on him, given his struggles?

Kyle Glaser: I answered the first part of your question about Baez earlier, but the second part caught my attention. After seeing what Yadier Alvarez looked like outside of Low A and now Baez, I think it’s prudent for everyone (myself included) to be skeptical of ex-Cuban professionals or international team players in their 20s blowing away Low A hitters, who are largely teenagers in their first year out of HS. No matter how good the stuff looks, we need to remember how truly terrible the level of baseball LoA is, and we should expect guys with that age and level of experience to dominate as Baez and Alvarez did rather than be impressed by it, and wait until they start facing age-appropriate competition in HiA and AA before we start running them up prospect lists. Low A is just not a great barometer for those guys given their age and experience level, no matter how nasty they look.

MacKenzie Gore (San Diego): 

    My first go round was limited by blister problems, but I still showed flashes of brilliance. On the year my numbers weren’t flashy, but far from terrible. Have scouts softened on me much? Assuming I’m healthy, has anything changed in my repertoire to knock me down past, say, Weathers?

Kyle Glaser: Scouts have not softened on Gore, no. And there is no comparison between Gore’s stuff and Weathers stuff. As long as Gore is healthy, he’s the guy. Of course, he needs to stay healthy.

Jeisson Rosario (Future Top 100?): 

    Thank you for the chat. I was lauded last winter as a potential breakout candidate but never materialized in 2018 at LoA. However, I more than held my own at my first taste of full season ball. What are scouts saying about me as we head into 2019? Is everyone still bullish on my potential above average – plus tools across the board? Will I tap into more power and potentially become a 55 hit / 50 power / 60 speed guy?

Kyle Glaser: Rosario is a really fine player and someone to feel bullish on, but above-average-to-plus tools across the board is a little rich. The power doesn’t project to ever be more than a 40 (ie 10-12 home runs, and that might be high) and you can find plenty of scouts who see a more average bat than an above-average one down the road because they are skeptical how much impact contact he will make. There is some strength in there he shows in BP, but the way his swing works in games isn’t really conducive to it. It’s more a slap hitter deal in games. Speed and defense in center are above-average to plus. It might end up looking a little like Travis Jankowski in the end role and production-wise. There’s plenty of time for Rosario to grow into more though. We’ll see.

Tommy N. (San Diego): 

    Since the Padres have so much depth should the Padres consolidate some talent for major league players?

Kyle Glaser: Yes, but not yet. Get the core up first, start winning some games, and then trade the leftovers for big league help around it. But starting to wheel and deal right now (beyond maybe one or two trades) is probably a little premature

Chris (Connecticut): 

    After the advanced prospects in the system graduate from their prospects status this season where might the Padres farm system rate? Still top 10?

Kyle Glaser: Supposing the Padres graduate Tatis, Urias and Mejia this year (and let’s say Allen, Quantrill and even Paddack too) there would be an understandable drop, but there is enough depth and guys who could take a jump this year that I feel relatively comfortable saying they’d still be in the top 10, although maybe a little closer to 7-10 than the top half.

Chris (Connecticut): 

    What Padres prospects who missed the top 10 have a high likelihood of being impactful at the major league level?

Kyle Glaser: Austin Allen is going to get to the big leagues and he’s going to hit. When all is said and done, I think he’ll end up having more of a big league career than quite a few of the guys ranked above him. Lefthanded bats with his thump and ability to hit for average too don’t get stuck in the minors, defensive questions be damned. He’ll get his chance and I think he’ll take advantage.

Waldo (You tell me): 

    Where do you rank Osvaldo Hernandez and when will we see him move up in talks of being a top prospect. He seems to have the arsenal to be a quality MLB pitcher and got results this past year

Kyle Glaser: Osvaldo is interesting. He’s more of a kitchen-sink, alter his arm angle, throw everything type of pitcher, and most see him as more of a lefty reliever or swingman because of it. But if he keeps getting stronger and adds a few ticks of velocity (he sits 91), maybe it can be more. For now, it’s more deception and pitchability, and that’s tough to buy in 100 percent on in LoA.

Chris (Connecticut): 

    What sleeper prospects might break into the Top 10 later this season? Do you have any prospects you personally are high on over the industry consensus?

Kyle Glaser: I can see Tirso getting there, although I’m not alone on that by a long shot so I don’t know if that counts as a sleeper. Tucupita Marcano is someone to watch. I don’t know how much power will ever be there, but with how much contact he makes, he has a chance to start posting some really eye-opening batting averages and on-base percentages in full-season ball as he did in short-season last year.

Chris (Connecticut): 

    Assuming Luis Urias and Fernando Tatis Jr. continue their development, how good is this double play duo? Any reasonable comparisons? (if you are okay with that kind of thing.)

Kyle Glaser: It’s got a chance to be one of the top double-play duos in the game. I think the total sum of the offense and defense will be better than Brandon Crawford-Joe Panik in San Francisco, but it’s not going to be Carlos Correa-Jose Altuve as some Padres fans dream of. Maybe something in the middle, like Xander Bogaerts and late-career Dustin Pedroia that we saw from 2015-2017. Two dangerous hitters in different ways who play really solid up the middle defense. You can win with that, absolutely.

Erick (San Diego): 

    With the way Tatis is playing in the winter league and if he keeps it up in spring training, could he break camp with the Padres?

Kyle Glaser: It’s certainly possible, but I’d err on the side of him coming up a bit later

David (San Diego): 

    With the current hole at 3rd base for the Padres, who do you see in the system making the biggest impact there? Big fan of Potts, but France has shown a lot of potential. Perhaps someone even lower than AA?

Kyle Glaser: Potts would be the guy in the system who makes the biggest impact long-term, but there is a strong sense the Padres will need more. The comp for him is Trevor Plouffe. A fine player with power who started in his best years, but no one would ever confuse him for a first-division, championship-level starter. In that sense, the Padres may be best served trading for a third baseman when their expected window of contention opens.

Friars on the Farm (San Diego): 

    Kyle, Nick Margevicius doesn’t posses a upper 90’s fastballs, but commands two breaking pitches well what is his ceiling?

Kyle Glaser: There is a sense within the org that Margevicius is a depth piece. He controls his stuff, but it’s all pretty hittable – we saw that become an issue after he got bumped to Elsinore. He showed flashes of 90-92, but there’s still too much 87-89 for evaluators to buy in on him as a major league reliever. He’s a depth piece, but someone to watch if he can get that velo up a bit more consistently given his control and downhill angle.

Mike (Peoria, AZ): 

    Do you see Frank Lopez jumping up the prospect ranking like Luis Patino did?

Kyle Glaser: There are certainly some things to like with Lopez and the potential plus fastball and above-average slider can get you excited, but the buzz on him even within the org isn’t at the same level Patino’s was at the same point in their development. Still, keep an eye on Lopez, he definitely is someone who shows some of the raw ingredients to jump

Derek (SD): 

    What are your thoughts on the tandem tucupita marcano and xavier edwards? Thanks!

Kyle Glaser: Both are good athletes and both are going to make a lot of quality contact. That’s a great place to start with two teenaged middle infielders. There is a long road ahead, but you can see the ingredients of future big leaguers.

Friars on the Farm (San Diego): 

    Can Tirso Ornelas stick in Right Field or will he end up at first base?

Kyle Glaser: Kind of depends on how he maintains his body. He’s not out of shape, he’s just a bigger kid already and you can see it going a few different ways. I’ve seen enough of him playing a fine RF that I think he can stick there, and he actual improved athletically and got a tick faster this year. With his makeup and demonstrated ability to put in the work to get better, I do lean toward him being able to stay in right field.

Chad (Canada): 

    Is Machado a good comp for Tatis Jr?

Kyle Glaser: Yes, although there is probably going to be a little more swing-and-miss to Tatis’ game, so the average will probably be a little lower than Machado’s .282. Still, he has every chance to be a franchise shortstop

theKraken (Pacific Ocean): 

    How do you feel about Buddy Reed? I know he has a long track record of not hitting, but did he hit enough in A+ to give some hope that he might have some offensive value at some point? Thanks!

Kyle Glaser: I like Buddy, both as a person and as a ballplayer. And again, you have to give him a ton of credit for the overhaul of his swing and setup. There is a segment that thinks his offense will eventually click, but that it will come late and he’ll be a guy who kind of rounds into form at 27-28, a la Gary Matthews Jr. I can see that happening, a later bloom.

bob (California): 

    Thoughts on Owen Miller. Can he be top prospect in the system?

Kyle Glaser: Owen Miller can hit. Period. A natural comp is Paul DeJong seeing as they were both Illinois State guys. Like DeJong, it wouldn’t shock me if Miller gets under-ranked a lot and ends up being a more consequential big leaguer than many other raw, toolsy guys people dream on. He’s a good one and the Padres feel like they got a steal.

Ray (The internet): 

    In your Mad Friars interview, you listed Tatis, Urias and Naylor as potential impact bats in the organization but not Mejia. Did he slip your mind or do you not think he is a potential impact bat?

Kyle Glaser: Mejia is probably the top 10 guy I feel least confident on being an impact bat, because his plate discipline and “swing at everything” mindset aren’t conducive to it. I think the tools are there. I don’t know if the approach or desire to put in the work to change the approach are. If we look back in five years and Francisco Mejia is hitting .300 with 30 doubles a year and is the best-hitting catcher in baseball, I buy it. If we look back in five years and he’s an up-and-down catcher who hits .211 in his callups with a 33 percent K rate, I buy it. His range of outcomes is so much higher than the others. The skills are there, it’s going to be up to him, after he experiences failure, to make the changes needed to succeed in the majors.

DJ (San Diego): 

    Whats up with Michael Gettys? Does his winter league season mean anything about him possibly progressing this year?

Kyle Glaser: It’s good to see Gettys having success this winter, but it’s going to take a lot more than 85 good at-bats in Australia to project to hit big league pitching. The hand-eye coordination, balance and pitch recognition still aren’t there to for evaluators to project more than an org player.

Jesse (Austin, TX): 

    Are there any concerns that Fernando Tatis, Jr’s swing and miss tendencies will undercut his offensive potential in the Majors?

Kyle Glaser: To a point, yes, but there is still a sense he’ll be an impact player regardless. Think of someone like Cody Bellinger maybe (completely different players, I know, but bear with me) – there’s a lot of strikeouts, the average probably won’t get much beyond the .260s, but he’s still a game-changing standout with his walks and power and defense and speed. If Tatis continues to adjust rapidly in the majors as he has in the minors, he could very well hit above that, but even if he doesn’t and continues to strike out a good bit, there’s still enough hitting ability and supplemental tools to be an impact player.

Mark (Austin, TX): 

    I’m really intrigued by how Logan Allen has produced well at every stop and kind of goes unnoticed in this system. What’s his ultimate upside if it all breaks right?

Kyle Glaser: You are correct that Logan Allen goes unnoticed, criminally so. Most see him as a solid No. 4 they would love to have in their rotation. You need those guys to win, and he can provide that.

Karl of Delaware (Georgetown, Delaware): 

    So what position of the field do you think Josh Naylor will eventually end up at?

Kyle Glaser: Can I get back to you after spring training? Seeing how all these offseason hardcore beach workouts affect his fitness will be huge to answering this question

AJ ((Orange County)): 

    Thanks again for the chat. What happened to Jorge Ona? Can we still expect big things out of him?

Kyle Glaser: Go back to my chat in 2016. It was kind of clear, unfortunately so, that Jorge Ona really wasn’t all that good pretty early on. The hope was the guy we were seeing at that time was just rusty. It wasn’t. That was him. He’s kind of your run of the mill stiff, minor league home run hitter. I wouldn’t expect much moving forward.

Karl of Delaware (Georgetown, Delaware): 

    Has Patino added enough bulk to his body so that questions about durability are a thing of the past?

Kyle Glaser: Adding bulk and keeping your elbow healthy are two completely different things. Durability questions won’t be a thing of the past until he shows he can hold his stuff and control through 120, 130, 140 innings in the minors. That’ll be true no matter what he weighs. After 83.1 innings this year, he needs to get up to at least 100 next year for those to start being answered.

Ben (Nashville): 

    What do you make of Reggie Lawson’s strong first half? Could he stick as a starter?

Kyle Glaser: He can stick as a starter, yes, as long as his slider keeps developing. His curveball really wasn’t much of a threat – really soft and loopy – so having that slider will be key to him sticking as a starter. As far as his first half, it was impressive, but you also have to look at the second half too.

AJ ((Orange County)): 

    Thanks again for the chat. Catchers Blake Hunt and Austin Allen both are pretty good-looking prospects to my untrained eyes. Are they close to top 10 and can you tell us more about them?

Kyle Glaser: Allen is closer than one might think. Hunt isn’t there yet, but he’s moving in the right direction both offensively and defensively and is one to watch for the future.

Deion Alexander (SD): 

    Why the team pass on sign Tulo when he was available, regarding his quality glove, bat and clubhouse presence for the upcoming talent?

Kyle Glaser: Hopefully because the Padres learned their lesson about giving money to past-their-prime, injury-addled shortstops in their 30s and giving them starting ABs.

Nick (Cary, NC): 

    What order would you put the following in order purely for potential ceiling: Tirso Ornelas, Jeisson Rosario or Esteury Ruiz? Thanks!

Kyle Glaser: You can find out in the Prospect Handbook how those three are all ordered.

Adam (Boston): 

    How close was Hudson Potts to making the top 10? What were the opinions you heard on him?

Kyle Glaser: I answered the first part about Potts earlier. Potts is good, people like him but don’t love him. He’s made some really impressive strides at 3B and the power is real. At the same time, there are a lot of holes in the swing that were visible even to non-scouts – breaking stuff under his hands, velocity outside – that lead to a lot of skepticism he’ll make enough contact to be a true everyday player. I think he’s a big leaguer, but as I said before, it’s probably more in the contributor category.

Ben (Ca): 

    Hey, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. Any insight into what we can expect from Anderson Espinoza this season?

Kyle Glaser: The tentative plan is for Espinoza to be on the Chris Paddack plan – go out sometime in May, 85 pitch limit per start, 90-100 innings.

Tony (L.A.): 

    Urias has such great speed and hits the ball so hard — are those indications that there can be a fair hope that his over the fence power will increase as he gets a bit stronger/more mature?

Kyle Glaser: I think you meant “bat speed” instead of “speed” – but yes. It will be important for Urias’ home run power to develop that way rather than a swing change. His eye and quick stroke are what make him who he is. If he starts sacrificing that for more uppercut swings in the name of home runs, it’s going to take away what he does best for minimal return. The best hope is he goes out, hits balls hard for a high average, and then in 3-4 years once he gets naturally stronger, some of those doubles start going over the fence.

Neal (Columbia, S.C.): 

    What is the ceiling on Edward Olivares? He seems to have alot of tools and has shown flashes.

Kyle Glaser: A fourth outfielder. He’s 22 and still so raw in so many aspects of his game—his approach, his effort level, his strength, his jumps and reads in center field—starting outfielders in the major leagues don’t have as many deficiencies as he has at his age, even with his tools. He’s an extra guy, probably an up-down OF.

Slappy (NC): 

    Which prospects are we likely to see in San Diego for much of the season? Urias for sure, right? Tatis? Which SPs? thanks

Kyle Glaser: Urias, Mejia, Allen, Quantrill and probably Paddack. I bet Tatis is there in the summer too, provided he stays healthy

David Jay (San Diego): 

    More total future value: AJ’s 2nd round picks (Austin Smith; Buddy Reed; Luis Campusano), AJ’s 4th round picks (Austin Allen; Joey Lucchesi; Sam Keating (OOPS); Dyan Coleman), or AJ’s draft attire?

Kyle Glaser: Those 4th rounders. I’m not sure AJ’s draft attire would get much resale on the secondary market, although I give him points for thinking (and dressing) out of the box

David Jay (San Diego): 

    In the post-Janigson Villalobos era, is there a viable challenger to Blinger Perez for the best name in the system?

Kyle Glaser: I mean, Henry Henry is still around.

Michael Stern (Rochester NY): 

    I know the Padres have a very strong system but still I was shocked that Xavier Edwards was not in the top 10. How close was he – and what do you see as his future with the Padres? Thanks for the chat!

Kyle Glaser: Edwards is very promising, but there are so many upper level guys who have proven it in full-season ball and received every bit as glowing reports that he wasn’t particularly close. He may get there, but he wasn’t really in the convo yet.

bill (Amarillo): 

    Sod Poodle fan here. Who at the AA level do you expect to stand out this year? How is the rotation looking? Best position players?

Kyle Glaser: Baez, Potts and Reed all finished last year in Double-A and are the guys to watch most closely. Morejon and Lawson should help make it a really strong staff, as we saw in Elsinore last year.

Don (Chula Vista): 

    Is it time to give up hope on Javier Guerra? Is his defense good enough to make up for his poor hitting?

Kyle Glaser: It was time to give up hope on him as anything more than an up-down guy in Lake Elsinore in 2016. Players with that pitch recognition, that approach, that quick in and out of zone swing, aren’t big leaguers of consequence. And no, no defense will make up for a sub .150-average in the major leagues, which is what he projects to. He’s just not a major-league caliber hitter, it’s that simple.

Jordan Guerrero (A doghouse somewhere): 

    How can my baby blue eyes be enough of a threat that I was banished from the MWL for the entire rest of the season?

Kyle Glaser: For those who don’t understand this question, the Padres demoted hard-throwing righthander Jordan Guerrero from the Midwest League after he was ejected for having an elongated staredown with the opposing team during the national anthem and then posted his letter of reprimand from the league president of social media with kind of a mocking caption. The punishment was more for violating the Padres social media standards than the threat of his baby blue eyes

Norm Chouinard (Connecticut): 

    Thanks for the chat. Did Nick Thwaits make an impression with the scouts and organization? Haven’t read much anything about him pre or post draft. Thanks again.

Kyle Glaser: Nick Thwaits made a lot of impressions on the scouts and the organization, all positive. We wrote a little bit about him here in the draft report card as the clubs best late-round pick https://www.baseballamerica.com/stories/2018-mlb-draft-grades-san-diego-padres/

Anthony (Boston): 

    I’m curious about the sustainability of the Padres’ international pipeline. Obviously the CBA closed things like their 2016 spending spree, but they found a bunch of lower-cost guys in that time (Patino, Baez, Marcano) as well. Are they simply ahead of the rest of the industry in international scouting?

Kyle Glaser: AJ Preller made his name in international scouting, so it was kind of the expectation he and his staff would do excellent in that arena, regardless of changes in the bonus rules. They have one of the best international scouting apparatuses in the game and they truly prioritize it, and that puts them ahead of most of their contemporaries

Andy Green (San Diego): 

    Who plays 3rd base for me in 2019? 2020?

Kyle Glaser: Well, it can’t be Wil Myers if the Padres are actually serious about fielding a competitive major league club

David Jay (San Diego): 

    Does Matt LaChappa now hold the all-time record for most service time in one organization without reaching the Majors? Is there any better story in the minors?

Kyle Glaser: I would imagine he does, and I can’t think of one off the top of my head. For those who don’t know the Matt LaChappa story, I suggest you check it out https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sports/padres/sd-sp-matt-la-chappa-longest-tenured-padre-20180503-story.html

Benjamin (Charlotte): 

    What kind of upside do you see out of Reggie Lawson? Does he have much reliever risk compared to a generic 21-year-old pitcher?

Kyle Glaser: You see flashes of mid-rotation upside, and I do give him a better starter chance than a generic 21-year-old given his three pitches (with his new slider) and the competitive makeup he has. He’s a good prospect. You’ll see him comfortably in the Top 30

Rasta (Costa Rica): 

    A year from now, the Padre bullpen will have more power arms than any team in baseball. Am I wrong?

Kyle Glaser: One year might be a little strong. Dairus Valdez and Gerardo Reyes still have some command things to figure out and I don’t expect them to be solved in one year. But in 2020, if you have those two and Wingenter with Munoz healthy as well, they’ll certainly be close to the top of that list of most power relief arms

Vinny (Texas): 

    Are the Padres more similar to the 2013 Marlins (Great Farm, bad ownership) or the 2015 Cubs (Great farm, great ownership)? Should we Padre fans be worried?

Kyle Glaser: More than ownership, it’s going to be incumbent on the current front office making better evaluations of ML-level talent, particularly in trades. It’s a pretty poor track record to be frank, and one of the reasons for Padres fans can rightfully be wary.

Mike (San Diego): 

    It’s completely insane that Justin Lopez is a full year younger than Edwards, actually has the tools to stay at SS long-term, and he’s been completely and totally abandoned by followers of this system for the shiny new toy, right?

Kyle Glaser: Xavier Edwards can undeniably hit. Justin Lopez might one day be able to hit, but most think it’s a longshot. That’s all the reason you need to have Edwards ranked significantly above Lopez. Nothing – I repeat, nothing – is more important for a positions prospect’s projection that their ability to hit.

Randy (SD): 

    Padres have a number of catching prospects – Allen, Torrens, Campusano and Hunt – seem the furthest along. Any of them have major league potential?

Kyle Glaser: All of them. Allen as a platoon C/1B who mashes righties, Torrens as a backup, Campusano as an everyday guy and Hunt as a power-hitter who has a chance to start. It’s a solid catching group

Nuke (Durham, NC): 

    I’ve seen conflicting reports on Xavier Edwards power projection, some say he could develop 15-20hr with his bat speed, and others say there is no power at all. When I see his swing he reminds me of a smaller trea turner. What’s your personal take on his power ceiling given today’s swing revolution and….dare I ask for your comp on Edwards?

Kyle Glaser: I would be skeptical of 15-20, even with how the major league ball is flying out. Just seeing his size and swing, I think it’s going to be a lot of hard line drives and a few will carry over. Also, just say no to comping guys with 45 pro games of rookie ball under their belts. Let him be him, and we’ll reassess when we have a larger sample

Trent (San Diego): 

    Does Ty France become a passable 3rd basemen for us this year? Also with Javier Guerra do they just throw him out at SS till June and see if he can figure it out?

Kyle Glaser: If the Padres are serious about making a turn upward in the standings this season, you can’t give Javier Guerra an everyday role. Not with how bad this offense already is. As for France, it’s passable but not enough that you feel great putting him out there everyday. He can play it fine, but he fits better as a 3B/1B reserve option than an everyday 3B.

Young (Rancho Bernardo): 

    Is the Craig Kimbrel trade looked at positively? How rare is it that all four of those players who at the time were at/below A ball get to the majors?

Kyle Glaser: Not yet. Margot is going to have to hit and Allen is going to have to become a solid rotation regular for the Padres to be able to claim a win. Right now, it’s edge Red Sox, but there’s some time left for the final outcome to take shape.

Ryan (Vista): 

    What are your thoughts on Owen Miller and Tucupita Marcano? I know neither have future All Star potential but Miller reaches AA last year and Marcano has just kept hitting.

Kyle Glaser: I’m not comfortable putting a hard cap on either ones potential. Both have such a feel to hit that no one should be shocked if they are everyday big leaguers in a few years, Miller before Marcano, obviously

Ryan (Abingdon, MD): 

    The inconsistent reports you mentioned, regarding the non-Naylor bats… I imagine Fernando Tatis’s hit tool was one that was probably up and down from scout to scout. How high and how low did that go?

Kyle Glaser: It went as low as 50 (a .250-.255 hitter) to as high as a 60 (.280ish). You’ll see in the magazine and the Handbook we split the difference on his hit grade

Collin (San Diego): 

    Did you like the Grant Little selection?

Kyle Glaser: The early reports on Little weren’t great, but let’s wait and see what he looks like after a full offseason of rest before we give it the thumbs up or down. After a long college season, I’m generally inclined to give guys a pass

Dan (Indiana): 

    Who do you see as SP right out of spring training?

Kyle Glaser: Lucchesi, Lauer, Erlin, Mitchell (sorry Padres fans) would be four. If they don’t make a trade or FA addition, Logan Allen would be my pick to win the final spot. His competitiveness, durability, and four-pitch arsenal is worth betting on.

Austin Hedges Swoon Factory (San Diego): 

    Is Francisco Mejia’s ceiling higher than what Austin Hedges can be or are the Padres better off trading Mejia for another piece and letting Hedges develop further?

Kyle Glaser: Mejia’s ceiling is higher because he can hit. The best-case scenario for the Padres is for Mejia to make the strides he needs to offensively and defensively this year, and then before 2020 try and get somebody to overpay for Hedges based on his defense just as he’s about to start making some money.

Bryan (Illinois): 

    Thoughts on Andres Munoz?

Kyle Glaser: He’s got an incredible arm that you can’t help but be wowed at. He’s also going to have to throw more than 26 innings in a season before the Padres can reasonably count on him. The injury red flags are huge.

Kyle (Torrey Pines High School): 

    Would you slot Owen Miller into Elsinore as an all-around-the-dirt infielder, or start him at SS in Amarillo until he proves he can’t handle the position?

Kyle Glaser: He’s going to start in AA and he’ll play wherever the Padres need him to based on who else gets sent out where after spring training.

Lotus K. (Diego): 

    Padres have indicated that Paddack’s route to Petco in 2019 will be hindered a little by an innings limit. Consistent with what you’re hearing?

Kyle Glaser: They aren’t going to send out someone who just topped out at 90 innings and give him 150+ in the majors (I mean they could, but it would be reckless). So yes, his innings will be watched and it will affect his ultimate role in the majors in 2019.

Taylor (Corona): 

    What have your heard about Luis Almanzar, Justin Lopez, and Jordy Barley? They seem to be falling behind in development but are still very young

Kyle Glaser: Almanzar doesn’t have the physical strength to be playing at the levels he’s been pushed to, Lopez has incredible hands, is growing and is starting to show some real power, but he probably won’t hit enough to be more than a backup at best, and Barley is a bouncy athlete but he lacks the baseball skills to really be considered much of a prospect right now

Dennis R (El Cajon): 

    Is it alarming that only one Preller draftee (Quantrill) is in the top 10? It seems like a lot of the depth was brought in during the one time 2016 intl splurge, but that the draft hasn’t brought in any real impact talent during Preller’s tenure. What are your thoughts on the Preller regime’s drafts?

Kyle Glaser: Gore is a Preller draftee and is in the top 10 as well. Joey Lucchesi and Eric Lauer are in the big leagues, Jacob Nix got there last year, Austin Allen and Hudson Potts aren’t far off the top 10, Buddy Reed and Luis Campusano comfortably made the Handbook….there’s plenty to like about the first couple drafts under Preller so far. It would behoove them, though, to add an impact college bat if one is available with this next Top 10 pick, however.

Derek (SD): 

    I know this doesn’t have anything to do with their current prospect, but who do the padres take at 6th?

Kyle Glaser: Best player available. Hopefully there is an advanced college bat there like Keston Hiura (9th pick) was in 2017

Alan (N.C.): 

    Despite the likely inconsistency, do you see Mejia as an eventual top 5 catcher? Thanks!

Kyle Glaser: The bar for catchers is so embarrassingly low now, I can see it happening even if Mejia never fully figures it out

AJ (San Diego): 

    Will the Storm be fun to watch this year? Thinking about heading up there for a few games. Thanks!

Kyle Glaser: Absolutely. A potential pitching staff fronted by MacKenzie Gore, Luis Patino, Ryan Weathers and Osvaldo Hernandez is easily worth the gas money up the 15 to Diamond Drive

Kyle Glaser: Alright everyone, we’ll call it a day here after three solid hours of chatting. Thanks so much for turning out, and have a great rest of your week.

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