San Diego Padres: Lloyd’s debut shows organizational pitching depth

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 25: Kyle Lloyd
SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 25: Kyle Lloyd /

The San Diego Padres promoted Kyle Lloyd to start Tuesday’s game, and his performance revealed just how much potential the organization has.

When the news broke that Jhoulys Chacin wouldn’t be able to go in Tuesday night’s game at Petco Park against the New York Mets, the chances San Diego got any quality innings appeared bleak. It sure didn’t help that the team just traded away three of the top members of their pitching staff either.

Kyle Lloyd beat all odds to get to this point, and he’s a nice story. But could he really fill in for Chacin and give the Padres a chance to take the second game of the series?

As it turned out, the 26-year-old who made just one start in triple-A showcased his skills under pressure on the largest of stages, the major leagues.

It didn’t go exactly as planned for Lloyd, as he was charged with four runs in his four innings of work. But the Padres are fortunate to have had a starter come to the majors on short notice and give them four innings before turning matters over in a tight game to the bullpen.

Just how grateful the club was for Lloyd was evident when everyone in the dugout gave the right-hander a high-five in congratulations of a major league debut. Not an ideal debut, but one in which the starter showed off multiple fastballs and off-speed pitches, an essential combination.

In fact, Lloyd took the field in the top of the fifth inning with a 3-2 lead and a chance to earn a victory. Unfortunately, matters got out of hand for him in the fifth, as he surrendered the tying run and was charged with the go-ahead run. Thankfully, the Padres rallied to tie the game in the bottom of that same inning, sparing Lloyd from taking a tough loss.

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Yes, Lloyd wasn’t spectacular, but he was better than most would have expected. And what fans should also be taking into consideration is just how far Lloyd really should be from the majors. He was just recently promoted to El Paso, and was only given the opportunity to come to the majors because it was his day to start to keep the rotation of starters consistent.

If Lloyd can hold his own in the majors, wouldn’t it make sense that other El Paso starters with even more experience at this highest minor league level would have even better major league results? This would make the pitching in the Padres organization a lot deeper than many think. Just something to consider.

Next: Padres: Top 30 prospects

Chacin is slated to start Wednesday night instead, the third of four games with the Mets at Petco Park. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM PT.