On the day of the Padres' final exhibition game, catchers Austin Hedges and Christian Bethancourt were informed of where they will start the regular season. Bethancourt will be on the active roster, and Hedges will be in El Paso with the AAA Chihuahuas. While both are stellar behind the plate and hit very well in exhibition play - Hedges actually had the stronger offensive numbers - Hedges still has options, while Bethancourt would have had to have been placed on waivers if not chosen. The move also affords Hedges to see regular playing time and continue to develop with the bat.
While Derek Norris will continue to be atop San Diego's depth chart at catcher, Bethancourt will still get ample playing time since Norris will be used less than he was less season. Ideally this setup will keep both backstops fresh, allowing Bethancourt to avoid going stagnant while preventing burnout in Norris.