The San Diego Padres might have another young pitcher to add full-time to their major league rotation, who may join with Colin Rea and Drew Pomeranz, not to mention Robbie Erlin who is currently on the disabled list, Cesar Vargas has performed well in just a couple of starts after being called up no more than three weeks ago.
The 24-year-old from Mexico has done extremely well for the big league club, but has yet to earn his first Padres win. In just two starts, Vargas has posted a 0.87 ERA with just nine total hits and one run allowed, but has a 0-0 record.
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In his first start, Vargas threw five innings and gave up four hits and just one run against the St. Louis Cardinals, walking three and striking out three.
His next and most recent start was this past Friday against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Chavez Ravine. Vargas went 5 1/3 innings shutout innings against the Dodgers, giving up just four hits and three walks while striking out six in just his second start with the Friars.
It’s a small sample size, but the quality is there against two playoff teams from 2015.
With the Padres ravaged by injuries to start 2015, San Diego had to call up somebody. Tyson Ross made just one start this season which was Opening Day and is still on the disabled list. Robbie Erlin impressed early on but also joined Ross on the DL, and the Padres had to bring somebody up. Enter Cesar Vargas.
Vargas started 2016 with the double-A San Antonio Missions and made two starts with the San Antonio club. In his two starts with the Missions Vargas posted a 1.42 ERA. Vargas previously spent seven years in the New York Yankees system before the Padres signed him to a minor league deal in the offseason, as Padres management makes an effort to sign international talent, especially from Mexico.
Vargas was used as a reliever in the Yankees farm system last year, but has started 48 career games in the minors while also saving 18 games in 2014-2015. Vargas doesn’t have blow away speed, but his cutter is a pitch that is so dangerous, especially in today’s game of baseball.
Vargas is dazzling so far for the Padres, and if he continues to have success, Padres manager Andy Green has some tough decisions to make. Once Robbie Erlin and Tyson Ross come off the disabled list, somebody will have to be sent down or moved to the bullpen. With Vargas throwing well, he might be slated for a permanent position in the Padres rotation for 2016.