Nobody noticed first baseman Cody Decker very much last year, despite his .354/.421/.717 line with 15 homers.
The problem? He was a 22-year-old in the Rookie-level Arizona League. It’s almost comical to be that old at that level.
Nevertheless, it appears the Padres took the slugger seriously, as they jumped him all the way to High-A Lake Elsinore to open this year.
Decker hasn’t let them down.
At 23, he’s a bit old for the level, but not egregiously so, and he’s 9-for-23 with a .696 slugging percentage thus far.
Decker, drafted in the 22nd round last year, and Vince Belnome, picked in the 28th round, are the core of the Storm’s lineup just half a year after being drafted. That’s remarkable, and it’s a testament to the Padres’ scouting department that they nabbed both of these guys.
It looks as though Cody Decker will breeze through the high-offense Cal League quickly, and could make it to Double-A later in the year. At that point, if he keeps hitting, the Padres really might have something here.
Maybe the Padres will ultimately have two Deckers (Cody and top prospect Jaff) on the big league roster in two or three years.