The San Diego Padres are at it again.
The team has claimed Tyrell Jenkins from the Cincinnati Reds. The Padres are now the right-handed pitcher’s fourth organization in just under a month, as he was traded from the Braves to the Rangers in early December, then claimed off waivers by the Reds just before Christmas Day.
The Reds recently signed RHP Drew Storen and needed to clear room on their 40-man roster, so they attempted to outright Jenkins to Triple-A this week. A.J. Preller and the Padres’ management team have long scouted Jenkins, and the Padres put the claim in on him.
The San Diego Padres had room on their 40-man roster, so he is safe to remain with the team. He completes the roster now, and the team will likely give Jenkins the opportunity to compete for a rotation spot in the spring. If he is unable to hold down a spot, he does have minor league options left and can be sent to Triple-A El Paso to provide depth for the team.
Either way, A.J. Preller made another solid pickup, as Jenkins has the ability to be a decent pitcher.
Jenkins is a former top-100 ranked player (#94 2012-03) and is still only 24 years old. There is still room to grow, and with the help of Darren Balsley, he could take the next step with his development.
He pitched for the Braves last season and got plenty of major league experience. He was 2-4 in 52 innings pitched for them last season. He started eight of his 14 appearances, and showed a propensity for being wild, as he walked 33 batters while striking out 26. He has a long road ahead, as his stuff is not that of a power pitcher currently. He needs to throw more strikes and let hitters put the ball in play.
Here are his professional numbers. Take a look and see for yourself. Nothing overly impressive at all. Again, he is young and could develop under the right situation.
The 2017 season will be an interesting one for the Padres. The team has so much talent at the minor league level. Which of that talent will reach the major leagues first? That is the real question. Clearly the pitching is behind the hitting when it comes to the Padres, but the young hurlers are certainly developing quickly.
It will not be long before we see Cal Quantrill, Anderson Espinoza, Logan Allen, and company toeing the rubber at Petco Park. Until then, Padres’ fans will just have to enjoy watching Wil Myers, Hunter Renfroe, Manuel Margot, and Austin Hedges in the everyday lineup. The skeleton work has been laid for a solid team for years to come. The fans will just have to be patient in the meantime.
Players like Jenkins will help bridge the gap until the aforementioned young pitchers are ready in 2018 and 2019. His addition is a necessity. He has a minor league record of 35-27 currently, with a 3.64 ERA in his 100 games and 500 innings pitched.
Jenkins has good stuff. He’s got a running fastball and a curve that flashes as an above average pitch. He has no decent change currently and struggles getting left-handed batters out. He will need to develop a third pitch if he wants to stay in the rotation. If he can’t, then he has the makings of a decent bullpen piece. Take a gander at this video of him early last season. He has an effortless motion and there are positives to his delivery. He has had shoulder issues in the past, but seems to be over that. Just something to keep an eye on.
At the moment, the Padres have a rotation of Luis Perdomo, Jhoulys Chacin, Clayton Richard, and Christian Friedrich. This foursome should be considered the favorites for the rotation, with each virtually guaranteed a spot unless they get injured or fall flat on their face. Jarred Cosart, Cesar Vargas, and Paul Clemens also figure in the mix as well. The Padres could also add a veteran or two as there are reports the team is talking to Jake Peavy and Jered Weaver.
The team will put together a group to compete for rotation spots, and that is a good thing. The names might not be all-star names, but you can be sure that the best arms out of a large group will man the 5-man rotation come April. James Shields, Tyson Ross, Andrew Cashner, and Ian Kennedy were great names, but produced nothing for the team. It is time to think outside the box and allow players to step up and win major league jobs. Guys like Cosart, Chacin, Friedrich, and Vargas could very well surprise you this year. Add Tyrell Jenkins name to that list, as he has the chance here in San Diego. The rest is up to him.