Despite early season weather interruptions, all four San Diego Padres affiliates kicked off their 2018 seasons in impressive fashions.
After months of talking about Major League Baseball’s top farm system, fans finally had the chance to watch them in action over the first weekend of MiLB play. Here’s how each San Diego Padres affiliate fared through Opening Weekend, along with a number of impressive individual highlights.
EL Paso Chihuahuas go 3-1 on Opening Weekend
The Chihuahuas began their season in Las Vegas, taking on the New York Mets AAA affiliate in a five-game set. El Paso took three of four games against the 51s over the weekend, outscoring them 22-15 in the process. The two teams will complete their series tonight with Kyle Lloyd going for the Chihuahuas.
Luis Urias led the way at the plate going 5-13, all singles, in his first AAA action. His very first at-bat of the season came against Zach Wheeler and resulted in a base hit up the middle. His comfort level appears to be unphased by the promotion as he drew five walks and struck out only three times. Urias hit the jackpot in Las Vegas, recording a .579 OBP through four games.
Short stop Javy Guerra also impressed at the plate, hitting two home runs and drawing two walks over the weekend.
Although he won’t be there long, Franchy Cordero played in his first two games of the season, going 3-8 with this Franchy Bomb.
Josh Naylor is on a Mission in San Antonio.
The addition of Eric Hosmer created a significant roadblock in front of Josh Naylor and his big league aspirations with the Padres. That hasn’t stopped him from showing his value. Naylor went 9-16 over opening weekend, smashing three home runs and a double while driving in 10 runs. He even played a new position, starting a game in left field for the Missions, an obvious sign that the Padres like Naylor and want to find a way for him to contribute.
The Missions’ pitching staff tallied 49 strikeouts, including six from Logan Allen and nine from Jerry Keel. Allen tossed a five inning, one hit gem, while fellow top pitching prospect Cal Quantrill gave up just two hits in 3.2 innings of work on Opening Day. Quantrill walked five batters, but didn’t look as bad as that might indicate.
The Mission took two of three (including a double header sweep on Saturday) of the Arkansas Travelers and won game one against the NW Arkansas Naturals on Sunday. They will finish their game game series against the Naturals with games today and Tuesday before having an off-day on Wednesday.
Lake Elsinore Storm drop three of four to Stockton Ports.
Edward Olivares is a serious prospect. After moving from a stacked Toronto Blue Jays system to an even more loaded San Diego Padres system, Olivares remains buried among a plethora of elite prospects. However, do not overlook the speedy outfielder.
Olivares went 3-12 over the weekend, drawing three walks and recording a double in his San Diego affiliate debut.
Lake Bachar took the ball Opening Day and posted a six inning shutout performance, allowing only two hits and one walk.
Our friends over at 2080baseball.com were in Stockton for the entire series. They posted a report on Adrian Morejon (3.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 5 K) and his first start of the season. Here’s the video, shot and put together by John Eshleman.
Fort Wayne TinCaps fall to 0-4 to begin the season.
Despite the record, the Fort Wayne TinCaps are loaded with exciting talent. One of this year’s most talked about prospects, Tirso Ornelas, homered while Gabriel Arias went 4-12 at the plate in his debut. Ornelas is a prospect who many believe will start to develop a lot of power this season as he quickly rises up the ranks of favorite prospects among evaluators and fans alike.
After all four affiliates began the season on the road, they will make their home debuts this week. Mackenzie Gore will make his debut while Fernando Tatis Jr.is sure to catch fire very soon. If you aren’t close to an affiliate ballpark, you can catch every El Paso and San Antonio game on MiLB.tv, along with various Fort Wayne and Elsinore road games.