As Corey Brock reported, the Padres #3 prospect, Matt Wisler was promoted to Triple-A El Paso. Wisler was dazzling in 6 starts in Double-A this year, logging a 2.10 ERA in 30 innings and striking out 35 as well.
The Padres are making player development a priority and as the Major League team continues to mature this year, expect to see a few more prospects come up to the big league level. Wisler gained great experience with the big club in spring training this year, and even made the start in one of the two USD exhibition games at the end of camp. While his stats there were horrible – he did come back after the damage was done with three straight outs and his “stuff” looked electric; it just got shelled by the Indians as well.
Wisler was drafted in 2011 and in 2013 finished the year with a 2.78 ERA and again, 131 strikeouts in just 136 innings. That was in Single-A and Double-A combined, though mostly Double-A. He shows great mound presence and is learning to use his secondary pitches more effectively, and of course can still overpower hitters at this point despite still just being 21-years-old. Joining El Paso in Triple-A and the Pacific Coast League will be a big test for him, as already in his first appearance he allowed 6 ER in 3 IP and walked 4. Ouch! In Triple-A, you face hitters on average who are 27-years-old, and many like teammates Jeff Franceour and Brooks Conrad who have had major league experience. Not to mention that the Pacific Coast League has the reputation for being a hitter’s league. Big numbers, smaller ballparks. They will adjust to his power and test his secondary pitches. From everything the scouts have said about Matt though – that will only pump him up and help him adjust to the moment.
You can never have too much starting pitching. While at the moment the rotation looks strong except for a shaky Eric Stults and inconsistent Robbie Erlin, it’s nice to have Casey Kelly and Matt Wisler in the minors ready to spot start if need be. There is also the always versatile Tim Stauffer and Donn Roach in the major league bullpen as well. Power arms never go out of style, and Wisler is hoping to power his way to the Padres in 2014.