The Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr., MLB's No. 2 overall prospect, got off to a slow start in 2018, hitting just .177 in April, but picked it up in May (.336), June (.330) and July (.295) before a fractured left thumb prematurely ended his season. He returned to action in the Dominican Winter League, where he led Estrellas De Oriente to their first Dominican Winter League championship in over half a century. Here's the latest news about the Padres' top prospect:
• Padres prospects' Spring Training stats
March 23: Tatis goes hitless against Angels
Tatis got a pair of at-bats after entering the game as a pinch-hitter, however he didn't come up with a hit in either trip to the plate. After the 0-for-2 game, Tatis is hitting .271 in Spring Training.
March 22: Solid all-around night for Tatis against Rockies
After a day off on Thursday, Tatis had a strong showing in the Padres' return to Cactus League play. The shortstop collected two singles (going 2-for-4), two stolen bases and two runs scored. His most impressive feat came in the sixth inning when he scored from first base on a routine single up the middle by Austin Hedges.
March 20: Tatis goes 0-for-1 against Brewers
Tatis entered the game late against the Brewers and struck out, lowering his average to .262, in his lone trip to the plate.
March 19: Tatis goes 1-for-4 against D-backs
Tatis' average for the spring dropped to .268 after a 1-for-4 performance against Arizona, his lone hit being a sixth-inning single. Outside of a 3-for-4 performance Saturday, he's 1-for-15 dating back to last Wednesday.
March 18: Tatis goes hitless against Indians
Hitting atop the Padres' lineup, Tatis Jr. went 0-for-4 against the Indians on Monday. The 20-year-old struck out twice and is now hitting .270 in Spring Training.
March 16: Tatis gets back in the hit column
After going 0-for-7 over the past three days, Tatis got back on track in a big way. The 20-year-old boosted his average to .303 with his first three-hit game of Spring Training. Tatis led off the game with a double, picked up an RBI single in the second and later doubled again, finishing 3-for-4 with an RBI.
March 15: Tatis' slump continues
Tatis went 0-for-3 in the Padres' loss to the Brewers and is now hitting .241 in Spring Training. Tatis, who is 0-for-7 over the past three days, was hitting .318 prior to missing a few days to have his wisdom teeth removed.
March 14: Tatis goes hitless against Dodgers
The Padres' No. 1 prospect went 0-for-3 in their loss to the Dodgers and is now hitting .269 in Spring Training. Tatis struck out in his first at-bat, then lined out and grounded out in his next two trips to the plate.
March 13: In return from wisdom tooth surgery, Tatis grounds out
Tatis returned to game action for the first time since March 6 after having his wisdom teeth removed. He entered the game as a defensive replacement in the sixth inning and grounded into a force out in his lone at-bat. The Padres' top prospect is now slashing .304/.385/.696 this spring.
March 8: Tatis gets wisdom teeth out
Tatis, who is hitting .318/.400/.727 with two home runs in 22 at-bats, will be out of action for a couple days after getting his wisdom teeth taken out.
March 6: Tatis triples, goes 2-for-4
Tatis didn't waste any time showing why he's so highly touted. Leading off the game, the 20-year-old shortstop hit an 0-2 pitch to left field and then showed off his 60-grade speed as he coasted around the bases for a triple. Tatis would later add a single and finish 2-for-4 on the evening.
March 2: Machado endorses Tatis
Fernando Tatis has a new fan rooting for him to break camp with the club -- the Padres' $300 million man. Manny Machado, who is expected to form a dynamic duo on the left side of the infield with Tatis for years to come, sounds excited about the possibility of Tatis starting the season in San Diego.
"Hopefully he breaks camp with us and he's our shortstop," Machado said. "He's a baller. He can play a little bit. But don't put that out there too much. I don't want him to blow up."
Manager Andy Green has said that Tatis "has a chance" to begin the season in the Majors. If the 20-year-old starts the year at Triple-A, fellow top prospect Luis Urias is the favorite to start at shortstop until Tatis arrives.
Tatis has done his part at camp, slashing .294/.368/.706 with a pair of home runs in the first seven games of Spring Training. Urias has also acquitted himself well, going 5-for-16 (.313/.353.500) with one home run.
Feb. 27: Tatis homers again
Fernando Tatis is making a statement early in Spring Training. After crushing his first homer of the Cactus League on Tuesday, the Padres' top prospect went deep again Wednesday, this time in dramatic fashion.
Batting with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Tatis tied the game with a solo blast to left-center field.
"We know he has power," said manager Andy Green. "He's proven it every single year, and he proved it in the Dominican Republic [this winter]. That's a big swing."
Feb. 26: Tatis hits first Spring Training homer
It only took Fernando Tatis until his second start to hit his first homer of Spring Training. The 20-year-old prospect hit a line-drive homer onto the left-center-field berm against the Brewers, showing why he's so highly regarded.
While it's certainly good to see Tatis get off to a hot start, it's likely he begins the season in the Minors. Not only is service time a consideration, but Tatis' 2018 season was cut short because of injury and he's played just 102 games at the Double-A level.
Feb. 13: Tatis rides championship winter into camp
In his hometown of San Pedro de Macoris, Tatis helped lead Estrellas De Oriente to their historic Dominican Winter League championship. Tatis, who homered three times in the postseason, is carrying that momentum into big league camp, where he's vying for a spot on the Opening Day roster.
Jan. 26: Tatis ranks No. 2 on MLB's Top 100 Prospects list
With Tatis raking his way through the Minor Leagues and winter leagues, the Padres' phenom lands at No. 2 on the list of the Top 100 prospects in baseball. Tatis leads a crop of 10 Padres who are on the Top 100.
Jan. 24: Tatis atop Padres' prospect-heavy NRI list
Tatis received an invitation to Spring Training, leading the list of 21 Padres non-roster invites. Tatis, who batted .286/.355/.507 at Double-A, looks like the Padres' shortstop of the future.
Jan. 11: Tatis hits walk-off HR, follows with huge bat flip
Tatis came up clutch in a Dominican Winter League postseason win, launching a walk-off three-run homer for Estrellas Orientales