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San Diego Padres: Top 10 Dynasty Prospects

fantasy baseball prospects MLB prospects rookies call-ups

The San Diego Padres will be our next stop on the farm to evaluate the best prospects on each MLB team. Once the 2020 MLB season begins, it may turn out that Minor League systems will be more important than usual. Franchises are losing money during the pandemic layoff, so many teams will be looking for sources of cheap production. It might also take older players longer to rebound from a long layoff meaning we could see more injuries and more roster moves. We might even see expanded rosters, at least in the early going.

One important question to ask is: How will a long layoff affect prospects? One has to assume the more advanced prospects prior to the work stoppage will be at an advantage, while the more “toolsy but raw” type could be hurt with the lack of repetition and in-game action; throwing or hitting in simulated environments just doesn’t match up to the real thing. Many prospects will have to work jobs during the pandemic just to make ends meet, while players who signed for large bonuses will have an advantage. Other prospects that lack strong discipline and commitment to their craft could struggle to stay in shape.

We won’t really know what the layoff impact will have on baseball in general until things start ramping up. But we do know that a strong prospect pool will continue to be an important element for a successful baseball franchise. We're looking at the Top 10 (or more) dynasty prospects in each organization with an eye to discovering which organizations are best positioned to succeed with their player development when games resume. Make sure to check out all of our prospect content, including Top 50 for 2020 and Top 250 for Dynasty Leagues.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received five total writing awards and 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, tops in the industry! Congrats to all the award winners and nominees including Best MLB Series, NFL Series, NBA Writer, PGA Writer and Player Notes writer of the year. Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!

 

Quick Synopsis

This system has an enviable mix of high-ceiling talent and depth. The Padres system also has a nice mix of both hitting and pitching prospects — including two of the top pitching prospects in the game.

 

1. MacKenzie Gore, LHP

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 2
2020 Prospect Rank: 42
2020 LEVEL: AA
MLB ETA: 2020

Gore is the best pitching prospect in baseball and the Padres have done a great job developing him. They’ve allowed his talent to dictate his progression through the system while preventing him from being overworked. He’s a left-handed pitcher with four potentially-plus offerings to go with plus command and control. Gore reminds me of a young Zack Greinke although the Padres’ prospect is a little more advanced than Greinke was at 21.

2. Luis Patino, RHP

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 18
2020 LEVEL: AA
MLB ETA: 2021

Patino is younger than Mackenzie Gore but he has held his own while playing with the best pitching prospect in baseball in both A-ball and Double-A last year. This smallish right-hander can dial his heater up into the upper-90s and he also flashes an outstanding slider. His repertoire is not as deep as Gore’s but he could have four average-or-better offerings when all is said and done. I do have some concerns over the lack of a downward plane on his fastball and heavy fly-ball approach.

3. CJ Abrams, SS

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 33
2020 LEVEL: A-
MLB ETA: 2022

I was all over Abrams prior to the 2019 draft due to his undeniable athleticism and simple swing. But his quick acclimation to pro ball — and offensive pop — surprised even me. There were scenarios where I would have easily considered having him drafted third overall so the Padres got a real steal at six. We’ll get a much better read on Abrams’ MLB ETA once he reaches full-season ball and we see how well his aggressive approach works against more advanced pitching. I think he’ll be a stud and he’ll quickly rise up from being the 33rd best dynasty prospect in baseball to within the Top 10-20 range once he gets to play again.

4. Taylor Trammell, OF

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 99
2020 LEVEL: AAA
MLB ETA: 2021

Trammell, like Abrams, is a very athletic player. Unfortunately, he’s not a natural hitter like the Padres’ impressive shortstop prospect and has significant swing-and-miss to his game. He’s also still trying to tap into his raw power after four pro seasons. The Padres made changes to his swing which could result in more power going forward. Trammell has the speed to steal 30 bases and the eye to take a significant number of walks to give him additional value in on-base leagues.

5. Luis Campusano, C

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 135
2020 LEVEL: AA
MLB ETA: 2021

Campusano has quietly become one of the better offensive catching prospects in baseball after hitting .325 with a ton of extra base hits in 2019. He also tamed his aggressive approach at the plate and posted a BB-K rate of 52-57 in 110 games. Campusano’s power is for real. He’s always generated outstanding line-drive rates but he became much more of a fly-ball hitter in 2019 and that helped his home-run output jump from three in 2018 to 15 in ’19.

6. Ryan Weathers, LHP

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 136
2020 LEVEL:
MLB ETA: 2022

Selected seventh overall by the Padres in 2018, I thought the pick at the time was overly aggressive and had him pegged as more in the 31-50 range. His performance in pro ball has been up-and-down and he looks like more of a future No. 4 starter than true impact hurler. He continues to battle his conditioning and he has yet to develop a reliable breaking ball. Weathers does have a solid fastball and very good changeup. He could chew up a lot of innings while throwing a good number of strikes.

7. Ronald Bolanos, RHP

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 148
2020 LEVEL: AAA
MLB ETA: 2020

It wasn’t long after I wrote about Bolanos as a potential sleeper that the Padres surprisingly promoted the hurler from Double-A to the Majors. His command and control both need continued work but this young hurler has shown the ability to miss bats and generate a healthy number of ground-ball outs. I believe Bolanos is being underrated by many as he features a 92-96 mph fastball and two high-spin breaking balls.

8. Edward Olivares, OF

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 213
2020 LEVEL: AAA
MLB ETA: 2020

Olivares is another player that I believe is being underrated by a lot of people — and has been back to his days as a Blue Jays prospect in A-ball. The athletic outfielder has the speed to steal more than 20 bases and he nabbed 35 bases last season — his third straight year with 20 or more steals. Olivares has hit double-digit home runs in three straight seasons and slugged 18 home runs in Double-A in 2019. He could end up having more success than Taylor Trammell when all is said and done despite the latter prospects getting more love due to pedigree.

9. Adrian Morejon, LHP

Dynasty Prospect Rank: 234
2020 LEVEL: AAA
MLB ETA: 2020

It’s hard to peg Morejon’s potential. On one hand, he's shown flashes of having three plus pitches and is just 21 years old. On the other hand, he’s struggled with injuries and has never thrown more than 65.1 innings in three seasons. He also has inconsistent command and control. Some see reliever, some see future mid-rotation starter. The pandemic layoff could hurt a player like this as he needs to face live hitting to learn to throw more quality strikes. Morejon will be a big leaguer, but he could end up in the bullpen.

10. Hudson Head, OF

2020 LEVEL: A-
MLB ETA: 2023

A high-risk, high-reward player, this 19-year-old prospect has 20-20 potential thanks to excellent bat and foot speed. But he also has a lot of moving part to his swing so it remains to be seen how well he’ll perform against more advanced pitching. I think he’ll figure it out, though, and his patient approach could provide a good number of walks to help offset the swing-and-miss.

More Prospect Analysis




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