Padres catcher Luis Campusano knows a 'beautiful opportunity' awaits him in 2024

Jeff Sanders, The San Diego Union-Tribune on

Published in Baseball

PEORIA, Ariz. — Ethan Salas' locker is located in a corner of the Padres' big league clubhouse at the Peoria Sports Complex, nestled amongst those of peers nearly twice his age. He's just 17 years old, so of course the directive is to soak up as much as he can before heading to the minors — likely back to high Single-A Fort Wayne — to begin to make good on his promise as the Padres' catcher of the future.

There is no timetable.

There is no reason to force one.

The previous catcher of the future sits directly next to Salas.

Luis Campusano was the first catcher selected in the 2017 draft and a one-time regular inhabitant of top-100 prospects lists. And, to be honest, it wasn't all that long ago that everyone was awaiting Campusano's arrival.

The ups and downs of everything that's transpired since that silly COVID-19 season planted a giant fork in Campusano's developmental path just makes it seem that way.


"Every day we grow older and over time we just start learning and we just adapt," Campusano said. "We're still learning at the same time right now. It's all about adapting and just growing from the people that you meet and play with and you see who've helped you along the way.

"It's still an ongoing process."

This is where the 25-year-old Campusano is as he settles into camp as, for the first time, the unquestioned starter behind the plate.

His path to this point has been anything but smooth.


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