The Padres have rewarded prospect outfielder Reymond Fuentes with his first call up to the majors. He’s making the start in center field tonight against the Diamondbacks.
Fuentes, the cousin of Cardinals outfielder Carlos Beltran, was a first-round pick of the Red Sox back in 2009 and eventually found himself shipped to the Padres in the Adrian Gonzalez trade. After struggling to the tune of a .218/.301/.302 batting line last season, the 22-year-old has enjoyed a breakthrough season in 2013 by batting .330/.413/.448 with six home runs, 43 RBI and 35 stolen bases in 107 games between Double- and Triple-A. He batted .418 (23-for-55) after his promotion to Triple-A earlier this month and hit safely in 13 out of 14 games.
With Carlos Quentin and Cameron Maybin still rehabbing injuries and questionable to return this season, there should be plenty of opportunities for Fuentes to show what he can do down the stretch.
Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area hints that the Giants may be done with outfielder Hunter Pence. It’s not clear just how seriously the club is contemplating such a decision, but there are six days remaining on Pence’s rehab assignment, at which point they’ll be able to recall him, reassign him to the minors or release him.
The 35-year-old outfielder has struggled to make a full recovery after spraining his right thumb during the first week of the season. Pence bounced back for a 17-game run with the Giants in April, during which he slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 with one double and one stolen base in 61 plate appearances, but was eventually placed on the disabled list with recurring soreness in his finger. He currently sports a promising .318/.359/.388 batting line with four extra-base hits (including a grand slam) over 92 PA in Triple-A Sacramento.
Despite his recent resurgence in Triple-A, the Giants may not need the additional outfield depth just yet. Mac Williamson, who was recalled in the wake of Pence’s DL assignment, has already cemented the starting role in left field and is off to a strong start at the plate as well. Of course, if the Giants decide to say a premature goodbye to their veteran outfielder (who, it should be said, helped them to two World Series championships over the last seven seasons), it’ll cost them the remaining balance on his $18.5 million salary for 2018.