The San Diego Padres brought up another top prospect, on Tuesday afternoon, to make his major league debut.
It was only a matter of time before the San Diego Padres called up top catching prospect Francisco Mejia. While many assumed it was going to happen after the El Paso Chihuahuas completed their playoff run, the Padres decided to make the move now and have Mejia join fellow top prospect, Luis Urias, on the major league squad.
Mejia was the target of a fantastic trade deadline deal that sent two relief pitchers, Brad Hand and Adam Cimber, to the Cleveland Indians in exchange for the catcher. According to MLB Pipeline, Mejia is the top-ranked catching prospect in all of baseball, he’s the third-ranked prospect in the Padres farm system, and he is ranked 21st overall on the Top 100 list of MLB prospects.
Since joining the Padres organization, Mejia appeared in 31 games for the AAA El Paso Chihuahuas, slashing .328/.364/.582 with a .946 OPS across 122 at-bats. He knocked in seven home runs, eight doubles, and showcased his quick, smooth swing that has had prospect evaluators salivating over the switch-hitting prospect for the last few years.
Mejia’s future role with the San Diego Padres.
Mejia’s debut fell short of the excitement that Luis Urias produced in his Padres debut as Mejia went 0-1 with a strikeout, pinch-hitting for Joey Lucchesi in the sixth inning. After seeing three-straight curveballs, Mejia swung through a Robbie Ray slider to end his Padres debut.
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While the debut was very brief and one pinch-hit at-bat means absolutely nothing, I wanted to take a second to address how this call-up will impact the Padres moving forward.
A few fans and evaluators believe Mejia may have better odds at a successful career if he makes the complete switch to the outfield. Well, the San Diego outfield is already extremely crowded and no one is sure if Wil Myers will stick at third base.
Others believe that the Padres will have to choose between Mejia and current starting catcher Austin Hedges. That’s not true. Of course, this is predicated on the fact that Austin Hedges can accept a new role, however, having Mejia and Hedges split the starting duties (say, 60/40?) would provide the Padres with the most impressive catching combination in baseball (should Mejia’s bat reach its potential).
Welcome to San Diego, Francisco Mejia. Here’s to a long, successful career as a member of the San Diego Padres. Enjoy the show, folks.