Saturday, July 16, 2011

Progress report

The Padres have made headway in negotiations with three prep players drafted before the third round -- Joe Ross (25th), Michael Kelly (48) and Brett Austin (54) -- and are confident they will sign all three by the Aug. 15 deadline, each for bonuses that exceed the commissioner office's recommendation for the slot. Austin, a switch-hitting catcher, took batting practice with the Padres before today's game against the Giants. The pitcher Kelly, too, was in a Padres uniform during pregame workouts.

Even with the $1.1-million signing of 16-year-old catcher Jose Ruiz and likely a similar commitment to Austin, the Padres still think they have a shot at signing Austin Hedges, the Scott Boras-advised catcher drafted 82nd who has a scholarship to UCLA and is rated by at least one other club as a top-10 talent. A deal with Hedges, an excellent defender, could cost well over $2 million and likely would come close to the deadline.

Kelly, a 6-foot-5 righty from Florida, went 9-1 with a 2.01 ERA and struck out 95 in 70.1 innings. He also batted .442 with six home runs. Austin, drafted more for his offense, batted .537 with 12 home runs for his Charlotte high school.

The Padres' first pick, Cory Spangenberg signed quickly and was promoted after batting .384 for the Eugene Emeralds. Out of the lineup today, Spangenberg is 0-for-11 with Fort Wayne, a low Single-A club. Also quick to sign was outfielder Jace Peterson, taken 58th with a compensation pick. Peterson, after 27 games with Eugene, has a .364 on-base percentage and 12 stolen bases.


  1. Does it favor the Padres in negotiations with the remaining unsigned players by highlighting Spangenberg's quick ascension?

  2. Billy, likely not. Dollars tend to drive the bus.

  3. with all of the Chargers news dominating the news wanted to know how things were progressing with the supposedly unsignable ross and hedges?