I’m one of the few Padres analysts who doesn’t have righthander Wynn Pelzer in his top 10 prospects coming into the year. Even I, however, had him just out of the top 10.
Pelzer, 23, struck out 147 batters in just over 150 innings at High-A Lake Elsinore last year, posting a 3.94 ERA in the high-offense circuit.
Pelzer, however, didn’t get out of the first inning in his first start at Double-A San Antonio, allowing eight runs (five earned) on five hits (one homer) and two walks.
67.50 ERAs need to come down fast.
It was the worst outing of Pelzer’s career, and a full two innings shorter than his shortest start last year.
Pelzer turns 24 in two months, so he’s not young for a pitcher just reaching Double-A. He needs to do well enough there this year that he doesn’t have to repeat the level; if he’s still in San Antonio near his 25th birthday, he’ll have crossed the boundary from potential mid-to-back-of-the rotation starter to organizational fodder destined for a possible middle relief role.
Early-season hiccups are fairly common, but it’s still a bit of a shock to see Pelzer fall this flat this fast. Hopefully it’s just a one-time thing.