San Diego Padres Jun 17, 2022; Denver, Colorado, USA; A detail view of a San Diego Padres hat on a glove in the dugout in the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Ethan Salas has taken another huge step toward his destiny.

Baseball America reported Sunday that the San Diego Padres catching prospect is being promoted to Double-A.

At age 17.

Yes, that is light years ahead of the normal development curve for most prospects, as the average age of Double-A hitters is 24.2. Then again, Salas is no ordinary prospect.

Salas, who was born in Florida but raised in Venezuela, was rated the No. 1 international prospect in 2023. He signed in January for a hefty $5.6 million bonus. rates him the No. 5 prospect in baseball, Baseball America ranks him sixth.

Salas hit well in Single-A, slashing .257/.335/.447 with nine home runs in 226 at-bats. However, only 35 of those at-bats came at High-A Fort Wayne, where he batted .200.

The scouting report projects Salas could develop into a “rare five-tool catcher,” with advanced hitting skills, above-average power and a strong arm and defensive skills.

Now, Salas takes those talents to the San Antonio Missions of the Texas League.

MLB fans reacted to the news with surprise, with some worried the Padres might be rushing their prized prospect.

[Ben Badler, Baseball America]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.