San Diego Padres: Bryan Mitchell Has Talent, But How Long is His Leash?

SAN DIEGO, CA - APRIL 12: Bryan Mitchell
SAN DIEGO, CA - APRIL 12: Bryan Mitchell /

The San Diego Padres came out flat last night and were defeated handily. Bryan Mitchell again had control issues but this time, he couldn’t work his way out of trouble.

Well, that was ugly. The San Diego Padres managed only one hit in last night’s 7-0 loss to the San Francisco Giants. Even worse, the only hit the Friars did get was from Clayton Richard, who pinch-hit for last night’s starter, Bryan Mitchell, in the third inning.

Mitchell got beat up last night, going three innings and allowing three earned runs on four hits, walking five batters. Of his 61 pitches, only 32 were strikes. Command has been an issue for the 25-year-old so far this season.

After a decent spring and an encouraging, yet extremely wild start in Houston last weekend (5.2 innings, three hits, six walks, no runs), Mitchell did himself no favors last night and, unfortunately, he just couldn’t escape the jams the way he was able to do in his last start.

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Padres’ Green shows confidence in Mitchell

Padres’ manager Andy Green had this to say after the game, as per AJ Cassavell of, “He’s had plenty in his history where you look at that and think ‘That’s going to play’. We have to find that and help that show more often.”

Green continued, “The challenge is out in front of him. We believe in the stuff. We believe in what he can do. It’s time to do it.”

If that’s not a glowing vote of confidence, I’m not sure what is. Though, Green isn’t one to mince words.

What I take from those quotes is a short leash despite all the talent that’s obviously there.

If Mitchell can’t get things right, there are guys like Jordan Lyles, who has started in the past but looks too good in the bullpen to move IMO, or even Eric Lauer, currently in Triple-A El Paso, who would be thrilled to get a chance to start for the Friars.

If Green sees enough out of him in his next start to justify his roster spot, but not necessarily enough to keep his rotation spot, it could open the door for Lauer to get called-up, as the Super Two deadline has now come and gone.

Next: Chase Headley Trade Options

This would likely send Mitchell to the bullpen to work on his control, as he’s out of minor-league options. It’s Bryan Mitchell’s move.