The AAA Affiliate of the Padres in El Paso is inching towards another playoff appearance thanks to a juggernaut offense with future Padres stars.
At least, we hope so. Ironically making the playoffs could delay the call up of top Padres prospects like Manuel Margot and Hunter Renfroe as the organization has expressed that fielding a strong playoff team and giving the players a taste of winning is what they want to be able to provide.
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The team now has a 5.5 game lead with 8 games to play. Last year they made it all the way to the league finals.
Right handed pitcher Walker Lockett allowed just 2 runs in nearly seven innings of work and the bullpen did the rest as the Chihuahuas won 9-4. Manuel Margot hit a double and PCL leading 12th triple of the season, hoping to start next season for the Padres in centerfield.
Nick Torres continues to show off his love of the Pacific Coast League as well. He hit his 5th and 6th home runs in AAA since being promoted recently from AA San Antonio.
One troubling sign was Ryan Buchter – who came out of nowhere this year to much success – continues to struggle. He was sent down to AAA to get some rest after some poor outings at the major league level and allowed two runs in this one.
The Padres are optimistic that they are building a culture of winning in the minor leagues that the next generation can bring with them and rely on veterans in San Diego to maintain that culture even when things aren’t going the way they were hoping. While the pitching overall in AAA hasn’t been as hopeful as the offense, the rest of the system is loaded with young arms ready to take over San Diego and bring the playoff atmosphere back to the big league club.