MILWAUKEE -- The Padres' second-half youth movement is in full-swing, and it appears right-hander Jacob Nix will be the next to move up to the big leagues.San Diego is expected to promote Nix later this week, and the 22-year-old is slated to start Friday's series opener against Philadelphia at Petco
MILWAUKEE -- The Padres' second-half youth movement is in full-swing, and it appears right-hander Jacob Nix will be the next to move up to the big leagues.
San Diego is expected to promote Nix later this week, and the 22-year-old is slated to start Friday's series opener against Philadelphia at Petco Park, which will be his MLB debut. Nix posted a 1.84 ERA between Double-A San Antonio and Triple-A El Paso this season.
Nix is the Padres' No. 14 prospect per MLB Pipeline. Given the club's top-ranked farm system, evaluators are confident Nix would fall in the top 10 on most other clubs.
Nix was a third-round pick in the 2015 Draft. On Saturday, he pitched six scoreless innings in his only start for El Paso this season. He posted a 2.05 ERA in nine outings for San Antonio.
The move isn't particularly surprising. When the Padres allowed Tyson Ross and Jordan Lyles to be claimed off waivers over the weekend, they made it clear that they'd be turning to their young pitchers. Right-hander Brett Kennedy had his contract selected on Tuesday and will make his big league debut on Wednesday against Milwaukee.
"These guys have a chance in front of them to be a part of what we do to change the culture, flip it and help create an expectation of winning," Padres manager Andy Green said. "I know there's other people that are higher up on prospect lists, but these guys have performed. There's something to be said about performance. They deserve the opportunity."
Nix was one of several prospects who needed to be added to the 40-man roster by December or risk being taken in the Rule 5 Draft. The Padres figured they should get an early look at the right-hander.
It's unclear how long Nix's first big league opportunity will last, with Eric Lauer working his way back from left forearm tightness. Nix's performance could affect that decision.
AJ Cassavell covers the Padres for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell.