What's on tap for Padres Spring Training and beyond

February 5th, 2024

This story was excerpted from AJ Cassavell's Padres Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

You may have heard: It’s Super Bowl Week. But here at MLB.com, we'd like to remind you ... it’s also Pitchers and Catchers Week.

Indeed, with the Padres slated to open their regular season earlier than usual -- with a two-game series against the Dodgers in Seoul -- they're beginning camp early, too.

That means on Super Bowl Sunday, pitchers and catchers will officially report to Peoria, Ariz. Here's everything you need to know about Padres Spring Training and the buildup to the 2024 season:

When is the first workout for pitchers and catchers?

A small handful of pitchers and catchers have already arrived. But the official report date is Sunday, with the first workout slated for that morning/early afternoon.

What is the date of the first full-squad workout?

The rest of the Padres will formally report on Feb. 16, with the club's first full-squad workout slated for that day as well.

Can fans attend workouts?

Yes. Once the full squad reports, workouts at the Peoria Sports Complex are open to the public. Those workouts typically begin around 9 a.m. local time and run until the first pitch of that day's Cactus League game, around 1 p.m. Prior to Cactus League play, workouts typically end in the late morning or early afternoon.

Who are some new faces fans should know?

In the December Juan Soto trade, the Padres acquired five players who should contribute to the big league club in 2024. Right-hander Michael King, who figures to slot behind Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove in the rotation, is the headliner. Meanwhile, new bullpen signings Yuki Matsui and Woo-Suk Go will face big league competition for the first time this spring.

Who are the top prospects invited to Major League camp?

Ethan Salas, a 17-year-old catcher ranked as MLB Pipeline's No. 8 overall prospect, headlines a strong group of prospects in Padres camp. Salas is an extreme longshot for the Opening Day roster, but shortstop Jackson Merrill (Padres No. 2 prospect and MLB Pipeline's No. 12 overall) has an outside shot.

Other prospects worth watching in big league camp include: LHP Robby Snelling (Padres No. 3, No. 36 overall), RHP Drew Thorpe (Padres No. 6, No. 85 overall), RHP Jairo Iriarte (Padres No. 7), RHP Adam Mazur (No. 8), 3B Graham Pauley (No. 12) and OF Jakob Marsee (No. 13).

When is the team’s first Cactus League game?

Typically, the Padres have opened their spring slate against the Mariners, with whom they share the Peoria Sports Complex. But with M's camp slated to begin a bit later, the Padres will instead open their spring schedule against the Dodgers on Feb. 22 in Peoria. They'll play a road game against Los Angeles the following day at Camelback Ranch in Glendale.

What are some other spring highlights?

Those first two games mark the Padres' only Cactus League games against L.A. They'll face the division-rival Giants at Peoria Stadium in a Friday night game on March 8. They'll also face the reigning National League-champion Diamondbacks in Scottsdale on March 5 and at home in Peoria on March 12.

Because of the Seoul Series, San Diego's Cactus League slate wraps up early -- on March 13 against Oakland.

What happens then?

The big league club will fly to Korea and play a pair of exhibition games, first against Team Korea on March 17, then against the reigning Korean Series-champion LG Twins on March 18 -- the team Go pitched for over the past seven seasons before signing with the Padres last month.

Of course, when the Padres leave for Korea, that's not the end of their spring proceedings in Peoria …

What is Spring Breakout and when is the game?

This year, in a first-of-its-kind event, all 30 teams will participate in a prospect showcase called "Spring Breakout." The Padres' top prospects will face the Mariners' top prospects in a game at 1:10 p.m. PT on March 15 at Peoria Stadium.

When is Opening Day?

The Padres' regular season formally begins with their Seoul Series against the Dodgers March 20-21. Those games are each scheduled to take place at 3:05 a.m. PT.

What is the schedule when the Padres return home?

The team recently unveiled its plans for a FanFest on March 24 at Petco Park. That FanFest will feature a number of events, including:

• A photograph and autograph session from noon to 2 p.m.
• A full-squad workout in front of the public from 2-3:30 p.m.
• A celebrity/alumni softball game from 3:30-5:30 p.m.
• Q&A panels with players, broadcasters and executives
• Gallagher Square's grand opening

You can find full details on the event here.

Any further exhibitions before their regular season resumes?

As a matter of fact, yes. The Padres will play the Mariners twice at Petco Park in a pair of exhibitions slated for March 25 at 6:40 p.m. PT and March 26 at 1:10 p.m.

When is Petco Park Opening Day?

After an off-day on March 27, the Padres play their first stateside regular-season game against Bob Melvin and the Giants. First pitch is slated for 1:10 p.m. PT on March 28.