Sunday, March 9, 2014

Padres Notes: Should The Padres Be Concerned About Stults?

The Padres have had their first televised spring games this week, which gave fans their first look at this year's squad. The games ended in a blowout loss and two ties -- which doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things.

Anytime I watch spring ball, I always like to look at individual players and matchups. Tommy Medica has been on fire, while Alex Torres looked awful in his first outing. Eric Stults has also been a guy I have liked in his career as a Padre. He is a bulldog, and goes to war with the below-average stuff he possesses. His outing on Sunday left me rather concerned.

The numbers don't look bad at all: 3.1 innings, 5 hits, 2 earned runs. However, the velocity on his fastball was where the concern lies. Stults was only hitting 81 MPH on his heater, and he topped off at 84 MPH. It is still early in the spring, but Stults carries an ERA north of 11 in 3 spring outings. In 2013, Stults average 87 MPH on his fastball, according to Fangraphs. A loss of velocity on his fastball could make Stults extremely hittable. He is signed for $2.4 million this year.

Other notes:

  • The Padres made some roster moves on Sunday, according to Corey Brock of The team sent minor league pitchers Adys Portillo and Joe Ross to minor league camp. Outfielder Yeison Asencio was optioned to Double-A. Pitcher Juan Oramas was optioned to the Triple-A roster. Outfielder Daniel Robertson was also sent to minor league camp. Currently, the Padres have 56 players in big league camp. 
  • Corey Brock also has a great piece up, as former Padres catcher Rob Johnson is in minor league camp, attempting to make the transition from catcher to pitcher. Johnson played in 67 games for the 2011 Padres. 

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