Tool Time: Top Power Hitters

The San Diego Padres would like to see more power on the farm. It could mean the difference between a good player and a special player at the major league level. With that in mind, here are the top power hitters in the system:

1. Michael Johnson

Injuries aside, Johnson has the bat that makes you salivate. When the barrel of his bat hits the ball it is going a long way. Even his singles are sharply hit and no hit is cheap when Johnson stands in the box.

An incredible 48.7 percent of his hits have gone for extra bases over a four-year minor league career. He has twice had more homers than doubles in a season. If he connects, odds are pretty good he will do damage.

2.Daryl Jones

Still finding his swing, Jones has as much power as anyone in the system – and perhaps tops the list in terms of raw power. The Padres knew it would take some time for Jones to put all his tools together and he is still coming into form. So, judging him on his 17 homers in three years of professional ball would be a monumental mistake.

Jones has an explosive swing that generates tremendous bat speed that allows him to send balls out of the stratosphere. Once he finds the balance his numbers will explode and his homer totals will rise to unseen heights.

3.Colt Morton

There is little doubt on this one – Morton's long swing and full extension can send fear into the opposition. His doubles often hit the wall and his homers have a Mike Piazza appearance with their height and girth.

His long frame is as much a strength as it is a curse. While 47.2 percent of his hits have gone for extra bases since entering the system, he also has to find the consistent stroke that allows him to make solid contact. If that happens, the sky is the limit.

4.Yefri Carvajal

Raw and unrefined, Carvajal's thick frame allows him to power any ball out of the yard. Last year, a hand injury took away some of his explosiveness but this young cat has all the power potential in the world.

It may be strange to see a guy with two professional homers on the list but Carvajal has a balanced swing and uses his trunk to drive through the ball. While he remains a long-term project, scouts are already talking about his 30-40 homer potential.

5.Nic Crosta

While Crosta has been hard at work trying to bring his swing to a more level plane, the outfielder's outstanding strength is enough to send balls flying deep and far.

His power production took a dip when he hit Lake Elsinore because of the refinement of his swing but he consistently stings the ball and gets good loft.

Also in consideration (alphabetical):

Kyle Blanks
He may be the biggest player in the box but he has swing that is more conducive to line drives and average than pure power. He will hit his fair share but his current strength outweighs the benefit of changing his swing to add more consistent power numbers. They will come naturally in time.

Felix Carrasco
As strong as they come, Carrasco is also raw in baseball terms. He may be stronger than anyone on the list but is still finding his swing and is the definitive sleeper on the list.

Craig Cooper
An uppercut swing and pure pull power make him a threat when he steps in the batter's box. His ability to turn on any pitch and stay balanced through his stride offers serious homer potential for the future.

David Freese
A sweet right-handed swing that is short, compact and explodes through the hitting zone gives Freese the ability to drive any ball to the deepest parts of a park. He has a chance to vault up the list as his pitch selection improves.

Jeremy Hunt
Physically strong, Hunt is more of a gap hitter with moderate home run power. His ability to hit for contact and natural strength project well for him to continue amassing long balls.


A compact swing and the same compact frame give Kouzmanoff some serious power potential at the hot corner. Over four years in the minors, Kouzmanoff collected 158 extra base hits, good for 37.4 percent. He projects to hit 25-30 homers in the majors but his biggest asset may end up being his ability to also hit for a solid average.


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