Fernando Tadis Jr. leaves home with a shot hitting 99 mph

Other than 24 total games in the outfield during the 2021 season and seven games in Triple-A this year, Fernando Tadis Jr. had little experience covering the outfield before the Padres officially offered him as part of a rehab assignment in the minor leagues. Perfect pitch for him when he returns to the big leagues on April 20.

Judging by the defense he displayed and the shots he was taking, it is safe to say that the move has been a complete success.

But if there was any doubt, Tadis Jr.’s arm hit a key shot to right in the top of the 8th inning Sunday, getting a hit off Panamanian Christian Bethancourt and retiring his compatriot at the plate. Margot would have had the tying run for the Manuel race.

The Padres will finish Won 5-4 to take two of three games against the powerful Rays.

At 99.5 mph, it was the second-fastest assist by an outfielder this year, behind one at 100 mph…Tadis Jr. pictured Carlos at home plate on May 10 against the Twins.

metric known as “Arm Strength”, or arm strength, collects the top 10% of shots made by outfielders (minimum of 50 shots to qualify). There, Venezuelan Ronald Acuna Jr. ranks first with an average of 96.3 mph, tied with the Brewers’ Brian Anderson, followed by the Rockies’ Brenton Doyle (96.0) and Tadis Jr. (95.0 mph).

Tatis has committed just two errors in right field and is leading in many modern metrics. Among outfielders in 2023, before Sunday’s game, he was tied for second in Outs Above Statcast Average (OAA) with six, one shy of the lead shared by Lewis Roberts, the Blue Jays’ Kevin Kiermaier and the Brewers’ Joey Weimer. He is first in total zone runs (Baseball-Reference) with 12 and third in UZR (FanGraphs) with 4.9.

Wilmot Chandler

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