Padres' prospects poised for breakout in '07

The San Diego Padres have a few select prospects that have a legitimate chance to breakout in the 2007 season and put their names either on the map for the first time, move significantly up the charts or move back on the map after falling from grace. Here are seven prospects to watch this year.

(In alphabetical order)

Kyler Burke

Not used to struggles of any kind, Burke will be looking to rebound in the coming year. He has immense talent and a solid approach at the plate but when the struggles came he was unsure how to deal with them and ended up pressing. Given his natural abilities, Burke could be a prospect Padres' fans are talking about very soon.

Matt Bush

Someone had to pick Bush to have a breakout season. The facts are he may be on his last hitting legs and that will have an influence on his season. He is set to begin the year in Lake Elsinore and with his back against the wall the bet is he responds. He has to get rid of the cockiness that has cast its net across his progress but will be playing for his future here – if he succeeds he can continue to play shortstop and hit and if he fails it will lead to a conversion to pitcher.

Michael Campbell

With a healthy hand and a hard-working demeanor, Campbell is poised for big things in the coming year. Already a stalwart defender, Campbell's bat should be in position to do some damage after being invited to the Padres' early hitting camp. Fighting for regular playing time among a routinely crowded outfield will be his goal and he will put in everything he has to achieve the goal.

Yefri Carvajal

The Padres have acknowledged that he has been surrounded by hype thus far but a healthy hand and a relaxed approach at the plate have Carvajal pegged for a standout season in 2007. He has some of the best raw power in the system and will look to put his plentiful tools into action in the coming season.

Simon Castro

Having only seen him pitch once, the book is still out on Castro. But, it is hard to ignore praise when it is so heavily heaped. As long as he throws strikes, Castro is a prospect that fans can salivate over. His impressive arm and mound presence say he will mature quickly and he offers up true stud potential on the hill.

Geoff Vandel

Coming into spring training overweight and with a poor attitude taught Vandel a valuable lesson – you are only as good as your last pitch or your last act. With a renewed commitment to being the best, the left-hander has a chance to turn a lot of heads in his direction. He still has a deceptive delivery and quality pitches that he throws for strikes and a year of hard work to get back into pitching shape showed him that he couldn't take his foot off the pedal. Expect the acceleration to continue this season as he passes cars by the lot.

Garner Wetzel

The outfielder struggled mightily in 2006, falling into bad habits on the field and then pressing while also having a run-in off the field. He is, however, a very toolsy player that has a cannon of an arm and a hard-working attitude. His bat had some holes but he picks up things quickly and is looking to show how he managed to lead the nation in RBIs as a collegiate player in 2006.

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