Padres May Find Bullpen Support Internally


With Craig Kimbrel and Joaquin Benoit traded, Shawn Kelley gone and Brandon Maurer possibly needed more in the rotation than the bullpen, help is needed for the Padres late innings.

More from Padres Prospects

Two options that are having nice Winter League seasons are Jay Jackson and Marcos Mateo, as reported by Jeff Sanders of the San Diego Union Tribune.

Jackson was drafted by the Cubs back in 2008 but came to the Padres last year as a minor league signee. He started in AA and struck out 16 in 10 innings while just allowing 2 runs. He was promoted to AAA El Paso where he picked up 14 saves in 48 games as he pitched to a 2.54 ERA and struck out 70 in 62 innings. Not bad.

In the 6 games he pitched for the Padres late last season, he didn’t exactly shine as he allowed 3 runs in just over 4 innings. Now pitching for Obregon in the Mexican Winter League he has struck out 21 in 13 innings and has gone unscored on in 12 of 13 innings. Good numbers, granted not at Major League caliber hitting.

For Mateo you might be a little more familiar with him. He pitched 26 games for the Padres last season after a good stint in AAA El Paso.Pitching for Oriente in the Dominican League, he has allowed only one unearned run in 14+ innings and saved 9 games.

More from Friars on Base

Bullpens have become more important in the modern game of baseball, and particularly specialists for nearly every situation. Last season the Padres bullpen suffered and with a team that struggled to consistently score runs and starting pitchers that allowed lots of home runs, it was a bad combination for success. Historically the Padres have developed great bullpen arms, from Luke Gregerson to Mike Adams and Heath Bell. Okay, so not everyone moves on to success after a stint with the Padres.

While Preller is not likely to spend a lot of money on a big name bullpen arm, perhaps part of the solution might be right in front of our own eyes already.