Left-hander Ryan Weathers was something of a surprise inclusion on the Padres’ NLDS roster, as the 20-year-old had yet to pitch in even a Double-A game, let alone a Major League contest. Still, Weather made his MLB debut in tonight’s Game 1 and impressed, tossing 1 1/3 scoreless innings and allowing two walks but no hits.
Earlier today, general manager A.J. Preller told MLB.com’s AJ Cassavell and other reporters that Weathers has “always been a strike thrower, and he’s continued to get better over the last few months….Honestly, it’s just giving another quality arm to [manager Jayce Tingler] and see how he wants to use him.” The seventh overall pick in the 2018 draft, Weathers has a 3.78 ERA, 4.91 K/BB rate, and 8.5 K/9 over his 114 1/3 pro innings. Working out at the Padres’ alternate training site, Weathers has seen his fastball velocity jump from 91mph last season to the 96-97mph range this year. He topped out at 96.4mph tonight, working a steady array of fastballs, sliders, and sinkers to six members of the fearsome Dodgers lineup.
More from around the majors…
- The Cardinals rank 23rd of 30 teams in home runs since the start of the 2017 season, and their 51 homers in 2020 was a league low. There’s no easy way to correct this power shortage, leaving The Athletic’s Mark Saxon to speculate that St. Louis might need to make some tough choices to get some more pop into the lineup without drastically (or at all) increasing payroll. For instance, could the Cards again trade from their depth of pitching prospects for a bat, even while their need for additional arms might be greater in 2021? Or, a more drastic option could be to decline Kolten Wong’s $12.5MM option for 2021 and install Tommy Edman at second base, freeing up some money to land a slugger.
- The Blue Jays face a lot of possibilities as they look to upgrade their roster this offseason, and the Toronto Star’s Gregor Chisholm explores several of those options as part of a reader mailbag piece. In Chisholm’s opinion, the Jays should consider trying to move Randal Grichuk in order to improve the outfield defense and to get some of Grichuk’s contract off the books — Grichuk is owed $29MM through the 2023 season. Grichuk is an imperfect fit as a center fielder but he did rebound from a tough 2019 to hit .273/.312/.481 with 12 homers (112 wRC+, 114 OPS+) over 231 PA this season, so that offensive production could attract some trade suitors.