No pitcher in the organization has the potential of Portillo. The right-hander, at just 17, is already hitting 94-95 mph on the radar gun. He also has a pair of quality secondary pitches.
Portillo is the prized jewel of the Padres Latin American efforts with the potential to have three plus pitches. His maturity for his age is also phenomenal. The only thing he needs is innings and an increase in command.
The backstop is already a plus defensive catcher in many ways. While he needs some help with blocking balls, he controls the running game and calls a solid game.
Quiles needs help at the plate but learned a lot playing against competition far older than him. He will need to continue to improve in that area, but his defense alone could push him to the majors.
The comparisons are in – insiders believe Valdez could be just as good as, if not better than, Drew Cumberland. That is pretty high praise for a raw kid out of Latin America.
Meeting those expectations will be a challenge, as Valdez still swings at too many pitches outside of the zone and attempts to rush everything he does. Slowing the game down and learning the language will be essential.
One thing he proved this past year was impressive poise and maturity for such a young age. The one thing that hasn't come is the power that many expect.
Rincon is mature beyond his years and has a solid approach. He is also incredibly strong. Many believe it will only be a matter of time before he hits. His defensive, however, needs a lot of improvement and will be a focal point.
The right-hander pitched out of the pen last year after tossing a lot of innings in college. He will be in the rotation this season with four superb pitches to pull from.
Bass has a deceptive delivery that explodes towards the plate. With a solid fastball and the potential for three plus pitches, Bass can be a force out of the rotation.
The southpaw lacks overall command but has a terrific assortment of pitches to pull from. He also has more in the velocity tank and has a chance to be special if the command comes around.
Another victim of command issues, there is no debating the stuff that Herrerra brings to the table. He might take more time to develop but the flashes of greatness are in him.
Another pitcher who saw time in the pen after being abused in college, Musgrave has solid command of his fastball and a terrific changeup to put hitters away. He will be in the rotation this year.
A terrible season in Arizona may have soured some of the luster, but it can be chalked up to being overwhelmed by the culture. A year older and wiser, Veras should return to being the pitcher that drew praise in the Dominican Summer League.
While he lost time to injury and suspension last season, Perez has a plus fastball that moves and solid secondary pitches. He needs innings but has a closer's type mentality.
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