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9 Padres

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IN LIMBO

SCOUT'S TAKE

KEY QUESTION

They've got the best farm system in baseball, and their guys are about to make an impact. When does Fernando Tatis Jr., arrive? Whenever service time is up, he'll join the club, but he's absolutely ready. You don't see many 20-year-olds with the raw talent to hit 30 homers—but he is one.

COMEBACK CANDIDATE

Sometimes there's too much pressure after you sign a big contract, and Eric Hosmer looked like he was pressing [last year], trying to prove that he was worth it. But he's got better protection around him, and he's a true gamer.

ON THE CUSP

Chris Paddack has got poise beyond his years—he's only 23—and has stuff that just jumps out of his hand: a plus changeup that is filthy because he repeats his delivery so well. It wouldn't shock me if he becomes their ace this year.

LAST LICKS

I love the Manny Machado signing. I wish he wouldn't have made the "Johnny Hustle" comment because it dents his rep, but he's so special on both sides of the ball.... Not often do you see so many young players at so many different positions with the opportunity to take the next step. The hype is real.

THE PAYOFF PITCH

THE PADRES suddenly have a lot of star power, with Manny Machado in on a 10-year deal and Fernando Tatis Jr., in the wings. After committing more than $400 million to infielders the last two winters (Eric Hosmer signed an eight-year, $144 million deal before last season), San Diego needs to find cheap pitching. The Padres have had a bottom-three starting rotation in the NL the last three years. Enter Matt Strahm. Acquired from the Royals at the trade deadline in 2017, Strahm was mostly a reliever last season, putting up a 2.05 ERA in 611/3 innings. The Padres moved him back to the rotation this spring, and he had 12 strikeouts and no runs allowed in his first nine innings. The 27-year-old righty has the skills to be a top-of-the-rotation starter: He is a four-pitch pitcher who tops out at 93-94 mph, and he held righties to a .149 batting average last year, striking out 29% of the ones he faced.

OVER UNDER

76.5

From 96 losses to the playoffs? Not quite. Manny Machado is a difference-maker, but the Padres are still at least a year away from contention.

LINEUP

2B Ian Kinsler

.240/14 HR/.380 SLG

3B Manny Machado

.297/37 HR/.538 SLG

1B Eric Hosmer

.253/18 HR/69 RBI

LF Wil Myers

.253/11 HR/13 SB

RF Hunter Renfroe

.248/26 HR/68 RBI

CF Franchy Cordero

.237/7 HR /5 SB

SS Luis Urias

.208/.264 OBP/.354 SLG

C Austin Hedges

.231 BA/14 HR/.429 SLG

BENCH

OF Franmil Reyes

.280/.340 OBP/.498 SLG

OF Manuel Margot

.245/.292 OBP/.384 SLG

FANTASY BREAKOUT

In addition to power, FRANMIL REYES, 23, showed discipline, with an impressive 8.4% walk rate as a rookie.

ROTATION

LH Joey Lucchesi

8 W/4.08 ERA/10.0 K9

RH Chris Paddack

7 W/2.10 ERA/0.82 WHP*

LH Matt Strahm

2.05 ERA/0.98 WHP/10.1 K9

LH Eric Lauer

6 W/4.34 ERA/8.0 K9

BULLPEN

CL Kirby Yates

12 SV/2.14 ERA/12.9 K9

RH Craig Stammen

2.73 ERA/1.04 WHP/10.0 K9

RH Bryan Mitchell

5.42 ERA/1.75 WHP/4.7 K9

MANAGER

Andy Green

*Minor league stats