Cahill, Bethancourt perfect in spring finale

Cahill, Bethancourt perfect in spring finale

LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. -- As the schedule would have it, Trevor Cahill's final tuneup for the regular season came in an exhibition game against Lake Elsinore, San Diego's Class A Advanced affiliate. The veteran right-hander made sure to remind the Storm hitters he was the big leaguer.

Cahill was dominant over three perfect innings as the Padres wrapped up their Spring Training slate with a 4-2 victory over the Storm. He struck out six, before heading to the bullpen for a few more tosses, as he prepares to start Wednesday against the Dodgers.

"He was outstanding," manager Andy Green said. "I thought he was really good. It was a good last outing before his season starts."

Jarred Cosart, Brandon Maurer and Christian Bethancourt tossed a scoreless inning apiece in relief, with Bethancourt fanning all three batters he faced. 

Bethancourt most likely on Opening Day roster

Triple-A righty Walker Lockett started for the Storm, with the bulk of their pitchers not yet fully stretched out. He was sharp over five frames, allowing one run on four hits, while striking out three.

That run scored after Austin Hedges led off the third inning with a double and scored on a Travis Jankowski RBI single. The Friars scored two runs in the sixth, including a Dusty Coleman steal of home on a delayed double steal. Collin Cowgill, who is fighting for the final spot in the outfield, added an RBI single in the seventh.

For Padres skipper Green, Friday's exhibition marked another opportunity to showcase the club's vastly improved Minor League system. The Padres currently possess the fourth ranked farm, according to MLBPipeline. And some of the top prospects who could come through Lake Elsinore in 2017 -- Cal Quantrill, Anderson Espinoza, Javier Guerra, Eric Lauer and Michael Gettys among them -- are a major reason.

"This is the lifeblood of our organization. If we're going to be great, the greatness is going to come from what's here right now," Green said. "I probably pay more attention to the Minor Leagues than most managers do. And it's easy to pay attention to these guys because there's reason to be excited about them."

Now, Green's focus turns to trimming his roster. The Padres currently have 30 healthy players in camp, leaving five cuts to come before the club unveils its Opening Day squad, likely on Saturday. 

Padres Up Next: There are no more exhibitions for the Friars; their next game counts. Jhoulys Chacin starts Monday in Los Angeles opposite Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw. The first pitch of the Padres season is slated for 1:10 p.m. PT, live on MLB.TV.

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AJ Cassavell covers the Padres for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.