Cherished Memories

San Diego Padres top prospects with Lake Elsinore in spring training finale

The Padres wrapped up their 2017 spring training by making the trip up to Lake Elsinore to showcase against the Storm, edging their High-A affiliate 4-2.

The game, which gave the Storm a nice bonus by bringing in an early crowd of nearly 6,500, featured most of the Padres regulars through the first four innings and a tune-up outing for just-named third starter Trevor Cahill, who struck out six over three innings of work.

Walker Lockett, who will open the year at the front of the El Paso rotation, worked five strong innings in a Storm uniform, giving up one run on four hits. The only ball he surrendered in the air was a flare double by his former catcher, Austin Hedges, down the right field line. Hedges scored when fellow Storm alumni Travis Jankowski followed with a single through a drawn in infield.

The Storm put their likely opening day lineup on the field behind Lockett. Ruddy Giron was at third, Javier Guerra at shortstop, Chris Baker at second and Josh Naylor - still likely the youngest player in the Cal League - at first. Flanking Michael Gettys in the outfield were Taylor Kohlwey in right and Edwin Moreno in left. With Austin Allen as the designated hitter, Miguel del Castillo, who recently re-signed with the organization, caught.

Giron, who came into camp a little thinner and more agile this spring, got the first hit for the Storm lineup with a two-out single in the fourth off Jared Cosart. Naylor scored the Storm's first run when he opened the seventh with a booming double to center field off newly-rostered Padre Craig Stammen and then came around to score on a pair of groundouts. Kohlwey, last year's 21st-round pick, opened the eighth with a triple off Zech Lemond, who labored for the Storm last year , then scored on a grounder.

Once the regulars came out for the Padres, several minor leaguers got an opportunity to put on the big league uniform, including Ty France who singled and scored against the Storm club he'll join this week. Tijuana native Tirso Ornelas, who turned 17 two weeks ago, also got to suit up for the Padres with a few family members in the crowd.

The Storm, whose rotation to open the year will feature highly regarded prospects Anderson Espinoza, Cal Quantrill, Joey Lucchesi, Eric Lauer and JC Cosme, with Jake Nix to join from the disabled list in early April, will open their 2017 season next Thursday as an early favorite in the Cal League. The Padres open in Los Angeles on Monday without similar expectations in the National League.


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