Here is a recap of the top performers of the week in the Padres organization.
Farm batter: Edward Olivares (AA)
Olivares has emerged as one of the best hitting outfielders in the Padres system, and he may be one of the most MLB-ready among minor league outfielders the Padres have. He made some waves this week with a strong showing, totaling six extra-base hits in six games with a 1.603 OPS. He has developed his power this season; now just one home run shy of his minor league career with 16. This is the highest level Olivares has played, and he is setting a career-high with a 141 wRC+.
Hey, Edward Olivares, how many homers did you hit tonight?
— Minor League Baseball (@MiLB) July 20, 2019
On Friday, Olivares went 3-for-5 with two home runs, three runs scored and five RBI. He has hit his way up the Padres’ pipeline and is now the 17th-ranked prospect in San Diego’s system and the fourth-highest outfielder.
Farm pitcher: Elliot Ashbeck (A+)
Ashbeck is making a name for himself despite being in the same rotation as Luis Patino and, until recently, MacKenzie Gore. Now that Gore has moved up to Double-A, Ashbeck can take more of the spotlight in Lake Elsinore. He is taking that opportunity and running with it. In Friday’s start, he tossed eight shutout innings while striking out five without a walk, about as dominant a start as you will find at the minor league level.
— East Village Times (@EVT_News) July 21, 2019
Ashbeck has thrown just under 77 innings in Lake Elsinore with a 3.17 ERA and 3.68 FIP in the hitter-friendly California League. He doesn’t wow anyone with his strikeout numbers, but he pitches in control, walking just 2.6 walks per nine innings, which is among the top 15 best marks in the California League.
MLB batter: Manuel Margot
Margot has been nothing short of on fire in July. Since July 1, Margot is hitting .318, with three home runs, a 1.126 OPS and 186 wRC+. He has sparked this Padres lineup when they needed it most as other Friar batters are struggling. He may be changing the narrative of the Padres’ outfield situation, especially with Wil Myers falling out of favor. Margot has taken full advantage of his newfound playing time and has not disappointed.
Sunday snapped a five-game hitting streak. On Thursday, he collected three hits, including a double and a triple. Margot has seen his average climb to .253 after a slow start. He now has a 1.3 WAR with a .727 OPS. With his competence playing defense in center field, Margot has all of a sudden become very valuable to this Padres clubs.
MLB pitcher: Chris Paddack
Whenever a Padres pitcher gets close to a no-hitter, it’s going to make headlines. From the beginning, Paddack looked electric in Miami, facing his original organization. He looked as dominant as he had his entire strong rookie season. Paddack was perfect through five innings before a Fernando Tatis Jr. throwing error allowed a base runner to start the sixth inning. Still, Paddack battled through the sixth and got out of the inning with the no-hitter still in tact. The excitement mounted even further after a 1-2-3 seventh inning, entering the eighth inning with a no-hitter hanging in the balance.
🚨No-Hitter Watch 🚨
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) July 18, 2019
Unfortunately, Starlin Castro led off the bottom of the eighth with a solo home run, ending the no-hitter and shutout in one swing. Still, Paddack finished the night with 7 2/3 innings of stellar pitching, striking out eight with just one walk. He is truly emerging as an ace and it would not be surprising to anyone if he continues to dominate like he did in Miami.