Heading into this season, the biggest questions facing the San Diego Padres was their starting pitching rotation. Who would be in it? Where would they get innings? Who is the ace? How bad could it be?
It appears that the team’s lack of MLB experience is not holding them back. In fact, they’ve gone in the other direction, calling up players from the low minor-leagues in an experiment to see how many of them can survive once they get here. The early results have been impressive.
Making his MLB debut this season after never having pitched above double-A, Chris Paddack leads all starters on the team in strikeouts per 9 innings (11.4) and ERA (1.04), as well as pitches thrown per start (84.0). His insane 0.92 WHIP is topped in the rotation only by....
Nick Margevicius, who also made his MLB debut this season after never having pitched above high-A, and his 0.63 WHIP. Margevicius trails Paddack is ERA (1.08) but just barely.
The Padres will try this formula at least one more time when they give Pedro Avila the ball and the start against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday evening. The 22-year old is just slightly more experienced than Margevicius, getting a single start in double-A ball this year before getting called up. He had never pitched above high-A before this season.
The Padres are expected to send Robbie Erlin to the triple-A El Paso Chihuahuas to make room on the roster for Avila.