Max Fried

Top 14 in ’14: San Diego Padres

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Just a few years ago, this was ranked as one of — if not the — best systems in baseball, and with good reason. While this is still a top ten system, some of the shine has been lost, thanks in some part to natural attrition/promotion, and thanks in large part to some stalled developments, particularly with their 2011 and 2012 draft class. Still, few teams have more quality and quantity of pitching than San Diego does, and there’s some intriguing offensive weapons here as well. It may not compete with the Houston’s or Minnesota’s, but this is still a quality group, better than every other system sans Colorado in the NL West.

Rank Name Position Bats/Throws Height/Weight
1 Austin Hedges C R/R 6-1 / 190
It’s amazing to think back to the 2011 draft, when the Padres took both Hedges and Brent Austin on day one — with most believing that the Austin was the more likely prospect to sign with Hedges likely headed to UCLA. With all due respect to the current NC State backstop, San Diego is awfully fortunate that it ended up the other way around.
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Holmes, Grant

The Rundown — April 4

Sorry to lead with a bit of an advertisement but I just wanted to let you know that if you need your garden full of dirt watered, the former Oakland A’s grounds crew can help. What’s that? Boo? Alright, here’s your Rundown.

Nathan Kirby — LHP Virginia — I’d be remiss if I didn’t lead this Rundown with the no-hitter thrown by Virginia sophomore Nathan Kirby. The Cavaliers’ southpaw shut down Pitt en route to arguably the most dominating pitching performance we’ve seen all season. Kirby struck out 18 (!) Panthers while walking just one. He also threw 87 (!) strikes over his 122-pitch performance. Kirby won’t be draft eligible until next season but I’d say there are gonna be a few more scouts at Virginia’s Friday night contests for the rest of the year after this outing. Read more »

Bradley Zimmer

What To Watch For — April 4-6

The college baseball season is entering its third month, and last weekend still saw a lot of weather issues. This has made it impossible for any player or team to keep a consistent schedule so far, especially for those who play in the dread cold weather states. The upside to April, besides hopefully improved weather, is that a lot more games are easier for fans to watch. ESPN starts showing a lot more games this weekend on ESPN3 and ESPNU will be 29 games Friday through Sunday.  Read more »