Padres pitching prospect Logan Allen delivers for San Antonio Missions

Logan Allen took a tough-luck loss on Friday night. (Photo: San Antonio Missions)

SAN ANTONIO – Left-hander Logan Allen has been one of the best starters in the Texas League, but tonight the 21-year old ran into some problems in the first inning and gave up three runs as the Missions fell to the Naturals 3-2.

“Logan threw well tonight,” said Missions manager Philip Wellman.  “I think in the first inning he didn’t establish his fastball and was using his slider a little too much.

“But after the first inning, he was impressive.  The last five innings he pitched is what we have been seeing all year.”

The Missions got one run back on catcher Austin Allen’s solo home run over the right-center field wall in the sixth inning and in the next frame center fielder Michael Gettys scored from second base on left fielder Josh Naylor’s RBI single.

Gettys also made an impressive play in the field, cutting off a ball in the gap to throw a strike from the outfield to second base to gun down a Northwest Arkansas runner attempting to stretch a single into a double.

“Michael is an exceptional center fielder.  He can really run a ball down and has a great arm.  His defense is ahead of his offense, but right now he could play center field in the big leagues. 

“He’s still young and we are still hopeful that his offense will catch up.  He just needs to stay with the hitting part.”

San Antonio had a chance to score in the ninth inning with two runners on, but third baseman Ty France grounded into a force play to end the game.

Despite the loss, Logan Allen was the star of the game.  The left-hander faced the minimum number of batters from the second inning through the seventh,  flashing a fastball that was between 91-94, along with a plus changeup.

“If that is the worst outing that I have all year, I will take it,” said Allen on his performance. “The issue for me was not giving up the runs – which I don’t want to do – but throwing 38 pitches in the first inning.  I’ve been really good at being efficient.  In my last outing, I threw 87 pitches in seven innings, which is where I need to be.

“As for the runs, these guys can score 12 runs with two outs, so that wasn’t an issue.

“After the first inning, I changed.  The rest of the game it was like here is my heater hit it.  I started getting into better counts where I could use my offspeed and breaking balls which worked.

“It’s not what you want in the first inning, but part of being a big leaguer is that you have to bounce back and compete.”

On the season Allen is 8-4 with a 2.78 ERA in 90.2 innings with 102 strikeouts against 33 walks. 

Mission Notes:Right-hander Chris Paddack makes his Double-A debut Saturday against the Arkansas Travelers, the Double-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners.

Posted by John Conniff

John grew up in Poway and has written for MadFriars since 2004. He has written articles for Baseball America, FoxSports San Diego, the El Paso Times, San Antonio Express-News, Amarillo Globe-News, Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette and Pacific Daily News in addition to appearing on numerous radio programs and podcasts. He can also break down the best places to eat for all five of the affiliates. There is no best place to eat in Peoria, Arizona.

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