Fernando Tatis Jr. is getting closer to making his 2022 Major League Baseball debut. However, the Padres superstar might not be in El Paso before he joins San Diego next month.

Kevin Acee reported in today's San Diego Union Tribune that Tatis took batting practice over the weekend at Citi Field, where the Padres were playing the Mets. The tentative plan is for the shortstop to take live BP against pitchers later this week when the Padres return from Detroit. Then, he is expected to join San Antonio for his Minor League rehab. Tatis has missed the entire season after suffering a fractured wrist from a motorcycle accident during the offseason.

The Missions will be in Midland this weekend to face the Rockhounds while the Chihuahuas will be wrapping up their long road trip in Tacoma. Both clubs return home next Tuesday, with San Antonio hosting Wichita and El Paso welcoming Albuquerque. It is possible that Tatis will be ready to rejoin the Padres by then, since they have a big series against the Dodgers beginning Friday, August 5th.

For months, Chihuahuas fans have been hoping to see Tatis in action at Southwest University Park. The 23-year-old has never played with the Chihuahuas before, since he made the jump from Double-A to San Diego. Based on Acee's report, the wait might have to continue for Chihuahuas fans. Padres veteran right fielder Will Myers is currently with El Paso on his Minor League rehab assignment as he recovers from a knee injury that has kept him out of action since May 31st. Myers has played DH and first base with the Chihuahuas during his rehab.

San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers
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Another interesting storyline surrounding Tatis will be his position when he returns to San Diego. He has been working out in the outfield and the Padres believe that it might be less wear and tear on his body than shortstop. Tatis plays the game with max effort, so it would not surprise me if he dives for balls or bangs into an outfield wall trying to make a catch. However, the Padres management still feel that roaming around in the outfield would be the safest thing for their $340 million investment. With the team very much in the Wild Card race, the only certainty is that the Padres are a much better team when Fernando Tatis Jr. is in the lineup.

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