El Paso Triple A Baseball Report #1
By this time next season, Triple A baseball will be in El Paso and fans will have a chance to follow the San Diego Padres' affiliate. Every month, I will highlight some of the Padres' players in Double-A and Triple-A that baseball fans can expect to play in El Paso next season.
Dean Anna .325 avg 3HR 12 RBI - Anna has been the Padres' best hitter and has slowly risen in the organization since getting drafted in 2008 from Ball State. He's not a flashy hitter, but so far, so good. He also plays second base, which will be a tough position for him to take over in the bigs since top prospect Jedd Gyorko made the team out of Spring Training.
Daniel Robertson .362 avg 10 RBI 10 SB - on the surface, the offensive numbers put up by Robertson look terrific. Then, you realize he's a 27-year old ballplayer who spent last season in Tucson. Like Anna, the Padres drafted him in 2008 from Oregon State. Even though Baseball America does not have Robertson ranked, home-grown talent will often get a chance to break in with the big club. If Robertson keeps hitting like this, do not be surprised if he gets a call-up to play in Petco Park.
Robbie Erlin 2-0 4.73 ERA - It has only been three starts for the former top Texas Rangers prospect, but the lefty will need to stay healthy to have a chance to produce in San Diego. Elbow problems cost Erlin part of last season, but the Padres like his stuff and it will be interesting to see if he can dominate Triple-A hitters.
Tommy Medica DH .306 avg 6 HR 15RBI - after hitting 19HRs last season in the California League, Medica has destroyed pitching in the Texas League. The San Antonio DH has a .412 on-base percentage and a .639 slugging. Unfortunately, at 25 he's a little old for AA baseball and is not considered a Padres top prospect. That could change if he continues to hit like this.
Reymond Fuentes CF .337 avg 2HR 8RBIs 11SB - after being named the Padres 12th best prospect in 2012, Fuentes had a miserable season in Double-A and fell off the prospect radar. Repeating San Antonio seems like a good idea and the 22-year old speedster has put together a great first month of the season.
Burch Smith 1.38 ERA 26 inn 0.73 WHIP 31 Ks and Matt Andriese 2.42 ERA 26 inn 1.00 WHIP 29Ks - Smith (22nd best prospect by BA) and Andriese (20th best prospect by BA) have dominated on the mound this season in San Antonio. Add in Donn Roach and the trio all have good potential to pitch in the big leagues. Smith throws missiles, but lacks a good secondary out pitch. Andriese has a killer curveball, but doesn't throw as hard as Smith. Keep an eye on both of these arms, since they could form 2/5 of the El Paso rotation next season.