OMG: San Diego Padres

The Padres’ Top 10 Prospects is now live, so that means it’s time to look at One More Guy (OMG) from San Diego’s system. The expectation might be Jedd Gyorko, the highest 2010 draftee to sign with the club, who hit .302/.372/.444 in his summer debut. He might be No. 11 on the list. But I’ll go a little more off the radar today with a bit of a personal favorite…

Brad Brach, RHP: There are few, if any, expectations on a guy taken in the 42nd round of abrach.jpg Draft (2008) out of Monmouth in New Jersey. To say that Brach has exceeded what little there may have been would be a huge understatement.

In his first full season, 2009, he was named the Class A Reliever of the Year after saving 33 games and helping Fort Wayne win the Midwest League title. He moved up to the hitting-friendly California League and saved 41 more while posting a 2.47 ERA and a .207 batting average against. That’s 74 saves over two years, more than any other Minor League reliever in the same time span and No. 6 among all professional closers, as I wrote in this story on Brach while he was raising his profile in the Arizona Fall League.

In his pro career, Brach has struck out 11.2 per nine innings while walking just 1.6 per nine. His WHIP is 0.884. He may not have the pure stuff that says future closer, but it’s looking more and more likely that he might have a big league career as a very useful reliever. Even if he has to continue to prove himself station-to-station — something he’s prepared to do — Brach has already gone far beyond what anyone could have expected.

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