MiLB Player of the Week Spotlight: Padres' Nate Mondou

June 13th, 2024

Nate Mondou is a grinder. The eight-year pro vet has suited up for three different organizations since being selected by the Athletics in the 13th round of the 2016 Draft, but while the threads have changed over the years his mentality has not: grind every at-bat, every game and do it for your teammates.

Across parts of eight seasons in the Minors there was arguably never a week that encompassed this mindset more than the one he is coming off of now with the Chihuahuas.

Mondou was the Minor League Player of the Week in the Pacific Coast League after going 9-for-20 with six extra-base hits, hitting safely in all five games and posting a 1.400 OPS between June 3-9 for Triple-A El Paso. The infielder also extended his season-best hitting streak to 12 games on Tuesday and is batting .333 with eight extra-base hits and 12 RBIs during this span.

“I’ve been lucky enough over my career to have some good people in my corner and I still feel like I'm getting better as a baseball player, which at 29 isn't always the case," Mondou told Greg Amsinger on MLB Network. "So from that aspect it’s definitely cool to keep having success in the field and it’s really a culmination of a lot of days of work I put in that makes the week special."

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Mondou entered the week red-hot at the plate and found another gear in the Chihuahuas' series against the Aviators. The Wake Forest product notched a trio of multihit games -- including a three-hit effort -- while recording a home run, triple and four doubles. He slashed .450/.500/.900 while driving in 11 runs and scoring six times. Not bad for being an elder statesman among the ranks in the Minors.

"There’s definitely days where the age starts to catch up with you a little bit. And you start to feel like you’re the dad or the grandpa in the clubhouse," Mondou said on MLB Network. "Luckily, we have a pretty experienced club here in El Paso so it’s been nice.

"But, yeah, definitely different than it was my first year at Triple-A four years ago when I was trying to get my feet wet and trying to feel like I got a chance at the big leagues. Now, I feel like I’m ready for whatever comes my way."

The 29-year-old's three-knock effort was especially noteworthy because it came on a night when El Paso trailed 15-1 in the fourth inning but rallied to win 17-16. Mondou crushed a two-run dinger, scored three times and collected a career-best six RBIs in the game.

"As corny as it may sound, they all count the same," he said. "So whether you’re up by 14 or down by 14 your stats are still going to count for yourself the same, you still gotta grind it out for your teammates, and hopefully give them a chance to put a couple of runs on the board too.

"It’s not easy, but you take it one at-bat at a time and try to make the most of them."

Mondou was signed by the Padres as a Minor League free agent and assigned to Triple-A El Paso on Dec. 8. Through his first 56 games this season, the lefty swinger is slashing .284/.384/.469 with five homers, six triples, 12 doubles, 37 RBIs, 30 runs scored, 33 walks and five stolen bases.

"There’s definitely something special about it," Mondou said of his team's epic rally. "There’s a certain level of pride and feeling like all that work that you put in pays off and you feel like you’re grinding stuff out. And that’s the player that I try to be so, you know, there’s something special about it for sure."