Mobile Players of the Month

Mobile didn't do a whole lot in the standings but still sit within striking distance of a first half crown. The addition of Tagg Bozied to the lineup aided the games of several players in the middle of the batting order, a trend that has continued even after he was promoted. The pitching has been led by Mike Thompson and it has the Padres' brass smiling knowingly.

Position Player of the Month: Paul McAnulty- OF

A slight edge over third baseman Cory Smith. McAnulty has been a little more consistent and has a little better strike zone judgement. McAnulty lead the team in RBIs (27), home runs (eight) and is second in walks (24) and total bases (89) with an average hovering around .300. Also, this is McAnulty's first year in AA, as compared to Smith's fourth, although Cory is still a year younger than McAnulty.

Cory Smith (.286/.356/.422(batting average, on base percentage and slugging percentage), with four home runs and 21 RBI's) is starting to show the promise that made him a first round draft pick with the Cleveland Indians, but his defense (14 errors) causes some concern.

Catcher Nick Trzesniak (.291/.389/.448, with three home runs and 20 RBIs) continues to play well, and first baseman Greg Sain (.268), the Southern League player of the week recently, has rebounded from a slow start.

Tye Waller, the Padres director of Player Development, stated on Greg Sain, "I don't know if Tagg Bozied woke him up but competition always helps. He was struggling. He is a guy who we thought could produce some runs."

Pitcher of the Month: Mike Thompson (RHP)

Another player in Mobile who continues to do well, but has also been up and down with Mobile since 2002. Thompson leads the team in innings pitched (73.1) and has posted a very good strikeout to base-on-balls ratio (48-to-12). Hopefully, he will be given an opportunity soon in Portland.

Waller elaborated on Thompson stating, "I don't want to say he surprised but he is starting to pitch the way we thought he could pitch. He wouldn't embarrass himself but he wouldn't play over the league. In Lake Elsinore we saw signs of him coming around. Now he is putting it all together. He is just doing it every time out. It is not a surprise."

Two of the Padres top pitching prospects, Travis Chick and Sean Thompson, rated highly by and Baseball America, have been up and down so far this year. In 49 innings Travis has 48 strikeouts, while walking 22. The problem is that he has also allowed 51 hits with an ERA of 5.33. Travis still doesn't turn 21 until mid-June, so there is still a lot of promise there.

Sean Thompson, after dominating Lake Elsinore in the early part of the year, has been brought back to earth in Mobile. Batters have been hitting .319 against Thompson, and so far his record is 0-3 with a 5.21 ERA. There is a bright side in that Thompson is still only 21, he has struck out 17 in 19 innings and he is still left-handed with a big curve. Sean will pick it up, he's just too good not too.

Closer Dale Thayer has 10 saves and 25 strikeouts in 24.2 innings, but also has allowed batters to hit .295 against him.

Commentary: One has to wonder if Paul McAnulty is ready to play at the next level, aren't the Padres better served by having McAnulty out in LF in Portland every day closer to the major leagues rather than Adam Hydzu?

We should see a promotion of Mike Thompson to Portland soon, on May 31 he threw seven solid innings to further lower his ERA to 1.84 against one of the better teams in the league.

All stats updated through Wednesday, June 1st.

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