Wednesday June 17, 2009
I keep hearing from so called experts at Baseball America, ESPN and other sources that the Padres don't have any athleticism in the minors.
I beg to differ.
The Padres have the fastest player in the minors in Luis Durango, who has Olympic caliber sprinter type speed. A 6.22 in the 60 yard dash is extremely fast.
Luis Durango, Cedric Hunter, Brad Chalk, Andrew Cumberland, Jaff Decker, Blake Tekotte, Lance Zawadski, and James Darnell are all the toolsy or athletic types that BA and the other so called experts praise in other systems, but seem to overlook in the Padres system.
And those are just the position players. Mat Latos, Wynn Pelzer, Simon Castro, Jeremy Hefner, Corey Kluber and Cory Luebke and several others are the hard throwing, TOOLS type pitchers these "experts" are screaming about in other organizations.
Then there are the young kids in the DSL like Adis Portillo, Alvaro Aristy and Jonathan Galvez that certainly should fit the bill, but are all but totally ignored.
I also keep hearing that the Padres changed their philosophy in drafting 4 high school players in their first 6 picks of the draft.
To my way of thinking, in the 2009 draft the Padres continued a trend that goes back many years in picking just 7 HS players in this draft while taking 43 college players.
Just because they took such an outstanding athlete at #3 does not mean that their philosophy changed. It just means the Padres have not had an opportunity to pick a player with that much upside recently. They have been picking in the bottom half of the 1st round, not the top 3.
And the so called experts seem to forget that last season the Padres took high school player Jaff Decker with a 1st round pick (#42). The year before they took high school player Drew Cumberland (#46) in the 1st Round. And in 2006 they took high school player Tyler Burke (#35) in the 1st round.
In the ten drafts prior to 2009 the Padres have taken 8 HS players in the 1st round. That is 8 HS players in 10 years.
I have not done the research, but I would be willing to bet sight unseen that 80% is a pretty high ratio of high school players taken in the 1st round for any team.
So either the so called experts have an agenda they are pushing or they should pay a little more attention to what is really happening.