Competition is a key word in the vocabulary of the San Diego Padres presently. The team has structured their farm system and major league team so that each player must compete each and every day for their job. With this philosophy, there is plenty of reason to be excited about the future of the Friars.
The San Diego Padres have created a certain culture around the franchise in recent years.
Starting in 2016, when the team changed gears and started to obtain prospects any way imaginable, they implemented a new philosophy. The team adopted a whole new way of looking at their young players. A new concept to the team was adopted where each young player will compete day in and day out for their job.
A brand new era in Padres baseball was born.
Not that regimes of the past didn’t expect their prospects to perform, but they were coddled in many ways. Players were promoted, despite their performance on the field. There was also no influence of international talent, which was a complete waste. The Padres drafted a player and kept them until their options ran out. In this modern era, nobody is guaranteed a roster spot, and players that were once considered top prospects are released if not showing improvement in their craft. Zech Lemond, Adrian De Horta, Nick Torres, and Fernando Perez were all released by the team earlier this past season as the competition was just too much for them. The Padres went with younger players who they thought had the upside to reach the majors. The cutting of prospects like this would not have happened in the past.
These young players are in fierce battles for playing time in the backfields, and that will only make them better players in the long run. Nothing is given to them, as they compete in every facet of the game and learn not to be complacent about their baseball studies.
At the Don Welke Padres On Deck Game, both Chris Kemp and A.J. Preller spoke to the media about competing and how the team enjoys watching these battles take place.
Preller spoke about many players on the current Padres roster while addressing the media. “There will be a lot of competitions for spots next year.” He indicated that the team is evaluating many players after their 2018 season. He also reports that there is a “healthy competition” within several areas of the minor league system. The Padres have structured themselves to succeed.
Chris Kemp, when speaking about the Padres’ minor leaguers and the fact they battle each day: “It’s a dogfight. We don’t shy away from competition. We talk about it daily. We want our guys to compete. It’s healthy and it creates winners.” Kemp is not shy about the fact the young players need to compete and fight each day to get better. He is correct. The only way for these men to get better is by facing adversity straight on.
Here is a look at some of the healthy competitions in the majors, and also at the minor league level.
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