Luis Patiño put the baseball world on notice last July while representing the Padres in the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at Cleveland’s Progressive Field, pitching 1 2/3 perfect innings with three strikeouts -- including a punchout of Angels top prospect Jo Adell (No. 5 on MLB Pipeline’s list for all
Luis Patiño put the baseball world on notice last July while representing the Padres in the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at Cleveland’s Progressive Field, pitching 1 2/3 perfect innings with three strikeouts -- including a punchout of Angels top prospect Jo Adell (No. 5 on MLB Pipeline’s list for all of baseball) with a 98.2 mph four-seam fastball.
That performance was part of a 2019 season that saw Patiño register an overall ERA of 2.57 and 123 strikeouts in 94 2/3 innings between Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore and Double-A Amarillo.
“That was a marvelous experience, something that every player would like to participate in,” said Patiño, signed by San Diego out of Colombia in 2016, about his experience in Cleveland. “It’s like a day in the big leagues for us Minor Leaguers, a beautiful event that all of us want to experience. I feel blessed to have been there with great players and to have spent that time with the group.”
Towards the end of the Minor League season, Patiño, the Padres’ No. 3 prospect on MLB Pipeline’s 2019 list, was promoted to Amarillo, where he gave up one earned run in 7 2/3 innings, with 10 strikeouts.
“2019 was a year I enjoyed a lot. I learned a lot,” Patiño said last week in Miami while taking part in this year’s Rookie Career Development Program organized by MLB and the MLB Players Association. “It was a year of blessings and challenges, because I had some good moments and also some bad ones. But thanks to God and the work I put in, I was able to bring out the best in me and get past those ups and downs. That’s why I think 2019 was a good year and beneficial to my career.”
Patiño, who turned 20 on October 26, is listed at 6 feet and 192 pounds. One of the Padres’ goals has been to build up the young right-hander’s body in their strength and conditioning program, in order to have him prepared for the rigors of a full season as a starter, most likely at Triple-A to open 2020.
“More than anything, I’ve been doing physical training this offseason, working on all the little things I maybe didn’t do as well on in order to get to 2020 a little better,” said Patiño, who combines a fastball that has reached the high 90s with a slider, curveball and changeup. “So, I want to get to the Padres’ Spring Training in good shape and prepared for whatever they have in store for me.”
David Venn is the executive editor of LasMayores.com, the official page of MLB in Spanish. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidVennMLB.