Although the San Diego Padres are not having the best season so far in 2017, their farm system is considered one of the deepest and most promising in all of baseball. One of those prospects, who was pitching in Tri-City only two seasons ago, threw a shutout Sunday.

Phil Maton, a Louisiana Tech product who was drafted in 2015 by the Padres, played that season with the Dust Devils. By 2016 he had risen to AAA El Paso, and this year made the big league club. Although he's been alternating between El Paso and San Diego, he was called up to relieve what team officials said was a 'tired' bullpen.

Maton made his MLB debut in the 8th inning of an 8-3 loss to Kansas City, and threw a 1-2-3 scoreless inning, including a strike out of deadly Royals hitter Lorenzo Cain.

Maton is the first of the Padre's draft choices to come through Tri-Cities to make it The Show since they moved their Class A farm club to GESA Stadium 3 years ago. They replaced Colorado, who'd had their farm team here for the previous 12 seasons. Unlike many fast rising prospects who only spend a few weeks here, Maton was with the Devils the entire season, where he compiled a 1.38 ERA.

By comparison,  former Dust Devils Trevor Story and Charlie Blackmon of the Colorado Rockies only played 3 games, and about six weeks respectively. They're both All-Stars now for Colorado.

The 2017 MLB draft is Monday, June 12th, and the Padres are expected to send the majority of their top prospects to Tri-Cities as they start the season June 15th.


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