August 23, 2014

Phillies Top 20 Prospects: Mid-Season 2010

Here is the mid-season update of my top-20 prospects. Despite using a bunch of their prospects to acquire MLB talent in recent years, the Phillies system still has a lot of promise, though most of it a couple years away from contributing.

I rank the prospects based on their ceiling, how close they are to that ceiling, and actual performance. When I can, I put comparisons for the player, but keep in mind I am in no way a scout.

1. Domonic Brown, OF

Why He’s Here: Unquestionably the best prospect in our system, and now considered the best prospect in all of baseball with the graduation of many future stars.

Key Stat: Brown has always been a good hitter, but his power was just a projection. This year it became a reality with 19 HR through 80 games. He could be a 35+ HR guy in the majors, maybe even getting 40 a couple times.

What’s His Ceiling?: Everything about Brown screams “star.” He is a 5-tool talent who is humble and hard-working and some have said despite all his talent, his best attribute is his mental make-up. His ceiling is perennial all-star, but don’t expect it right away. Darryl Strawberry with a good head on his shoulders has been a common comparison for Brown.

When Will We See Him? Hopefully soon. He could help during the stretch run. He will likely replace Werth or Ibanez in the outfield next year.

2. Jarred Cosart, RHP

Why He’s Here: Replacing Kyle Drabek as the best pitching prospect in our system, Cosart might be a better prospect. His fastball caused one scout to say he had the best pure stuff in the minors aside from Stephen Strasburg. His fastball has reportedly hit 98 mph, and his BB/9 rate shows he has good control for his age.

Key Stat: As you will see, the Phillies have a lot of electric arms who can’t quite find the strike zone. Cosart’s 4.8 K/BB rate is very impressive and very promising.

What’s His Ceiling?: He’s got #1 starter stuff, but is a long way from being one. His repertoire (hard fastball, curve, change-up) is similar to Josh Beckett, but it’s way too early for that be a fair comparison and his curve will likely never be that good.

When Will We See Him? The Phils will progress Cosart slowly, and 2013 is probably the first time he’ll enter the discussion for a call up. It’s possible if they decide to use him as a closer (he’s drawn some Papelbon comps) and if so, he could arrive earlier.

3. Jonathan Singleton, 1B

Why He’s Here: Only 295 at bats into his career and Singleton has turned a lot of heads. One scout said he was the best hitter in the Sally League since Manny Ramirez and Baseball America already has him in their top-50 prospects in all of baseball.

Key Stat: 33 walks for an 18-year-old in his first pro stint is very impressive. Singleton is an extremely advanced hitter for his age.

What’s His Ceiling?: Not sure yet after such a short time. Right now he’s showing the ability to hit for average, take walks, and hit for power. We’ll have to watch which of these tools continue to grow and which level out as he goes along.

When Will We See Him? Unless he moves to the outfield (a possibility) or the NL adopts the DH (a possibility) it might not be until Ryan Howard’s contract runs out in 2016 (though you’d have to think we trade him by then). Even if there is an opening for him, it would probably be 2014 at the earliest.

4. Anthony Gose, OF

Why He’s Here: Super fast, super athlete whose bat is coming along. Gose is one of the youngest players in the Florida State League, but he has managed to improve his OPS almost 50 points over last year despite moving up a level.

Most Impressive Stat: Gose has 10 triples already, a tribute to his speed.

What’s His Ceiling?: I don’t know that Gose is ever going to be a great hitter, but he could be a gold glove center fielder, hit for average, and steal a ton of bases.

When Will We See Him? I’m not sure we ever will see him in a Phillies’ uniform. Of the top-5 guys, he’s the only one I could see the Phillies trading in a big deal. If we hang on to him, he’s probably another 2013 arrival.

5. Brody Colvin, RHP

Why He’s Here: Our top draft pick from last year (selected in 9th round, but received largest bonus), Colvin has been dominant after a rough start. After an 11.15 ERA in April, Colvin had a 3.21 ERA in May and has had a 1.84 ERA since June 1st. Reports say he hit 97mph in the 7th inning of a recent start.

Key Stat: No one stat jumps out for Colvin, but if his reported fastball velocity is a “stat,” that would be it for me.

What’s His Ceiling?: Similar to Cosart, he likely projects as a 1-2 starter, but there is a lot of projection in that. His fastball is there, but he will need to refine his control and breaking pitches (I’ll try not to be redundant with this, as that is what pretty much every minor league pitcher needs to do).

When Will We See Him? Probably on the same track as Cosart, one level at a time, projected arrival in Philly as early as 2013.

6. Sebastian Valle, C

Why He’s Here: The only decent catcher left in the system, Valle has a (potential) big bat for the position. After a slow start to the year, he’s come on of late, with 6 HR and an .809 OPS since June 1st.

Key Stat: 9 HR in 289 AB’s is pretty good for a 19-year old catcher. Shows he has 20+ HR potential. The question is how good an overall hitter he can be.

What’s His Ceiling?: My best guess is an everyday catcher who hits .260 – .270 with 20+ HR and average defense.

When Will We See Him? He’s got a chance to be Carlos Ruiz’ replacement in 2013 or 2014.

7. Tyson Gillies, OF

Why He’s Here: Because we have yet to see him healthy (hamstring), and his previous minor league numbers, and impression in spring training, tell me he should be pretty good once he gets there.

Key Stat: 26 games, 105 AB’s, the majority of which he played while hurting.

What’s His Ceiling?: Shane Victorino with a better batting average, more walks, more steals, less HR’s, and not as good defense.

When Will We See Him? Depending on when he gets back and how he looks, he could be the one to replace Ibanez in 2012 (assuming Brown replaces Werth). An outfield of Victorino, Brown and Gillies would be one of the fastest, and best defensively, in all of baseball.

8. J.C. Ramirez, RHP

Why He’s Here: He hasn’t been dominant, but he’s been very solid. Promoted to Reading and hasn’t slipped up through 5 starts, which is impressive at age 21.

Key Stat: Has shown poise when he gets in trouble. His WHIP drops from 1.32 with no one on, to 1.15 with men on base.

What’s His Ceiling?: A number 2-3 starter if he can develop his 3rd pitch, a back-end bullpen guy if he can’t. Obviously if the Phils promoted him to Reading as a starter, they think that the former is a good possibility.

When Will We See Him? Assuming he pitches well in Reading, he could be up as early as late next year if we need him. More likely he will be a candidate for the 2012 team.

9. Jesus Sanchez, RHP

Why He’s Here: Acquired in the Bobby Abreu trade as a catcher, Sanchez was converted to a pitcher and has shown impressive improvement in a short period of time. He doesn’t have dynamic stuff, but his has good control and hasn’t allowed a lot of hits.

Key Stat: 1.08 WHIP. Sanchez doesn’t dominate with high K/9 numbers, but he makes up for it by not allowing many baserunners. Last year in Lakewood, he allowed 1 more hit than innings pitched. So far this year, he’s allowed 20 less despite moving up to Clearwater. His rapid improvement is cause for optimism.

What’s His Ceiling?: Scouting reports on Sanchez are pretty much non-existent because of his recent switch to pitcher. Based on his numbers alone, and assuming his rapid improvement means there is more to come, I’d project him as a 3-4 starter.

When Will We See Him? The Phillies like him enough that he is protected on the 40-man roster, so he could be up once he proves himself in Reading (whenever that is). Like Ramirez, probably a candidate for the 2012 team.

10. Trevor May, RHP

Why He’s Here: He was neck and neck with Cosart for the top pitching spot after a couple starts and has big time stuff, but his control went off the deep end and he ended up being demoted to Lakewood.

Key Stat: The only thing more ridiculous than his K/9 rate (11.4) is his BB/9 rate (7.1).

What’s His Ceiling?: He has the same type of ceiling as Cosart and Colvin, but is further away from it because of his control issues. Only a handful of pitchers have had good seasons in the majors with a BB/9 rate above 5, let alone 7.

When Will We See Him? Unless he fixes his control problems immediately, I can’t imagine him being in the discussion for a call-up before 2014.

11. Phillippe Aumont, RHP

Why He’s Here: I could probably just copy and paste Trevor May’s evaluation here. Aumont (who I ranked as our 2nd best prospect prior to the season), has great stuff, no command, and was sent down a level.

Key Stat: 6.7 BB/9. Not quite as bad as May, but still horrendous.

What’s His Ceiling?: I personally don’t think that Aumont will end up as a starter. The Phillies are right to try him there first though. He’s got a big fastball with a lot of movement and is an intimidating presence on the mound at 6’7”. I think he is a future closer and his stuff could make him a very good one if he reigns it in.

When Will We See Him? I think the Phillies keep up the starter experiment for the rest of this year and then scrap it and make him a full-time reliever sometime next year. If that’s the case, you could see him as early as late next year.

12. Domingo Santana, OF

Why He’s Here: The youngest player in Lakewood history, Santana has a ton of potential, and a lot of time to harness it as he should only be a junior in high school right now.

Key Stat: 39 walks in 246 AB’s is very impressive for a 17-year old. Even when he struggled, Santana kept his patience.

What’s His Ceiling?: Santana’s ceiling is very, very high, but he’s probably the furthest from it on this list. He shown amazing patience and power (12 HR in 364 AB’s) for a teenager, and he’s not fully grown into his body. He could stay in single-A for 2 more years and still be on a normal developmental path. However, you can only get so excited about a .207 BA, .322 SLG% and 103 K’s in 72 games. It’s too early to tell what kind of ceiling he really has.

When Will We See Him? He doesn’t turn 21 until August of 2013. Your guess is as good as mine.

13. Jiwan James, OF

Why He’s Here: Touted by many scouts as an even better athlete than Domonic Brown, James was converted to a hitter last year and has slowly improved since. Whether or not it ever all comes together is a different story.

Key Stat: James is currently on a 20-game hitting streak and has hit .317 since June 1st.

What’s His Ceiling?: Like many of the Phillies’ high-risk, high-reward guys, it’s tough to say. James hasn’t shown much power at all, but scouts think he will as time goes on. He has shown good speed on the basepaths and an outstanding outfield arm. Right now, he looks a lot like a Domonic Brown did in 2007.

When Will We See Him? If he looks like 2007 Dom Brown that would give him 3 years to fully develop and have him knocking on the door in 2013.

14. Scott Mathieson, RHP

Why He’s Here: Power bullpen arm who can hit 99mph on the gun and in my opinion should have been in the Phillies’ bullpen from day 1 this year.

Key Stat: 11.8 K’s is what you want to see from a late-inning bullpen guy.

What’s His Ceiling?: I personally believe Mathieson can be a solid late-inning reliever ala Ryan Madson (not the 2010 version). Clearly Ruben Amaro does not.

When Will We See Him? We will probably see him again when the rosters expand in September, if not earlier.

15. Jesse Biddle, LHP

Why He’s Here: Going solely on scouting reports as he has only pitched 9 innings. Anytime you are throwin 92-93mph as a high school lefty, it’s a good start.

Key Stat: N/A

What’s His Ceiling?: I think a #2-#3 starter unless he is really able to develop a dynamite second pitch.

When Will We See Him? Too early to say.

16. Jonathan Villar, SS

Why He’s Here: Because middle-infield prospects are really hard to come by, especially in our system, and he’s showing some skills with the bat and on the bathpaths as a youngster in Lakewood.

Key Stat: He would be a lot higher on this list if not for his 35 errors so far this season. You wonder if a move to 2B might be in his future.

What’s His Ceiling?: Could possibly be an everyday player if he improves his defense. 33 steals is impressive at the half way point and if he can develop some patience and some moderate power (extra base hits, not HR’s) he’s got a good shot.

When Will We See Him? Ask me after Jimmy Rollins signs his extension.

17. Harold Garcia, 2B

Why He’s Here: Garcia burst onto the scene this year with a record-breaking 37-game hit streak in the Florida State League. He hit .335 for Clearwater before getting moved up to Reading.

Key Stat: Garcia hasn’t batted under .291 in a minor league season since 2006.

What’s His Ceiling?: He was old for Clearwater, so his performance in Reading will give us a better idea. Like Villar, he’s got a chance at being an everyday player, perhaps a poor man’s Placido Polanco if he can cut down his strikeouts.

When Will We See Him? He could be a bench option as early as Spring Training next year.

18. Austin Hyatt, RHP

Why He’s Here: Because he is among the leaders in all the minors leagues in strikeouts with 122. He’s not higher, because at 24 years old in A+, dominance is somewhat expected.

Key Stat: His 5.3 career K/BB rate bodes well for his future as a starter or reliever.

What’s His Ceiling?: Probably a 4th starter or a late-inning reliever. Hyatt has good stuff and relies a lot on control. I’ve read articles about him working on a change-up that could allow him to remain a starter. I don’t care how old he is though, that K/9 rate has my attention. Not sure why he’s not already in Reading.

When Will We See Him? Depends on whether he starts or relieves. At 24, it’ll probably be in the next 2 years, or not at all.

19. Matt Rizzotti, 1B

Why He’s Here: He has forced himself into the prospect discussion by having the 2nd best offensive season in the system behind Brown. At 24, he was supposed to raking in Clearwater, but he has actually been better since his promotion to Reading with a 1.031 OPS.

Key Stat: He’s just a couple AB’s short of being qualified for Eastern League batting title, which he would currently be leading for, batting .355.

What’s His Ceiling?: He’s probably at it right now, which is why he finds himself down at 19. The question is, is this just an extended hot streak (he hit .263 in Clearwater last year, .268 in Lakewood the year prior) or is he really a .355 hitter now? He could be an everyday first baseman for someone if it’s the latter (think Lyle Overbay or something) but my guess is he will end up as a solid bench player / utility guy.

When Will We See Him? He could be a bench option next year or even a September call-up this year.

20. Justin De Fratus, RHP

Why He’s Here: Lots of options for the 20-spot, but I’m going with De Fratus based not only on his stellar numbers, but a scouting report that had him a 98mph recently, which gives me hope he could be a closer prospect.

Key Stat: Nothing jumps off the page, but he does have an above average ground ball/ fly ball ratio, which would be wonderful for a future closer in CBP.

What’s His Ceiling?: Could be a pretty good closer. Scouting reports say he keeps the ball down in the zone, has good command, and if the 98mph report was accurate (you never know with minor league guns) that’s a good combo.

When Will We See Him? The Phillies liked him enough to send him to Reading a week or so ago. If he performs there, he could get a shot at the bullpen in 2011 or 2012.

Others Worth Noting (Alphabetical Order)

Drew Carpenter, 25, RHP, AAA – We’ve seen him in the majors, and know he doesn’t have great stuff, but he’s having a good year in AAA, with a 3.34 ERA and 1.29 WHIP. Could he be a Kyle Kendrick-type starter at some point?

Leandro Castro, 21, OF, A – Another toolsy outfielder in Lakewood (6 HR, 15 SB) who has been playing well of late, with an .807 OPS since June 1st.

Freddy Galvis, 20, SS, AA – Galvis is amazing with the glove, but unless he can get his bat going (.549 OPS) it won’t matter.

Nick Hernandez, 21, LHP, A – Was dominating single-A (1.61 ERA) before going down with an arm injury. Just coming back now and is one to watch.

Jonathan Pettibone, 19, RHP, A – Would probably be #21 on this list. Pettibone was a bonus baby like Cosart and May and is another big righty who the Phillies hope will fill out into his frame. Has improved as the year has gone on and has a 2.45 ERA in his 4 post-all-star starts.

Julio Rodriguez, 19, RHP, SS-A – Julio-Rod got a couple starts in Lakewood before being sent down to Short Season Williamsport. His age and K/9 rate (9.8) are enough for me to keep an eye on.

Colby Shreve, 22, RHP, A – Shreve was drafted in 2008, and got a nice bonus, with the Phillies knowing he would need Tommy John surgery. He finally got on a mound this year, and has done well so far, with a 3.33 ERA and 1.10 WHIP.

Mike Schwimer, 24, RHP, AA-AAA – Another bullpen candidate who could find himself in majors sooner rather than later. Schwim was recently promoted to AAA after a 3.60 ERA (inflated by a couple bad particularly bad outings) and a very impressive 13.0 K/9. He’s also huge, at 6’8”, 246 lbs.

Vance Worley, 22, RHP, AA – Worley started off the year pretty bad and I thought he was well on his way to the bullpen, but he’s come on strong with a 3.00 ERA in his last 14 starts. He gives up too many hits, but has a chance to be a 4-5th starter or a relief pitcher.

For all of ReclinerGM’s Phillies’ Prospect articles, visit our Prospect Page



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Comments

  1. jurnee16 says:

    Pete,
     
    From what you’ve heard is the Cosart elbow issue really an issue or much ado about nothing?

  2. Pete says:

    I’m pretty sure he saw the famous Dr. Andrews and got a clean bill of health.

    With all these pitchers though, I can guarantee one or two will be lost to arm injuries.

  3. Tony says:

    “Replacing Kyle Drabek as the best pitching prospect in our system, Cosart might be a better prospect.”

    If TOR offered Drabek for Cosart, would you do it?

  4. Pete says:

    If TOR offered Drabek for Cosart, would you do it?

    Interesting question.

    Not sure, Cosart has the higher ceiling, Drabek is much closer to the bigs.

    Depends on how much risk you want to take. At this point, I personally wouldn’t do it.

  5. Pete says:

    Something else I meant to mention in Dom Brown’s write-up…

    He can hit left-handed pitching. Not at the same clip as right handed, but it’s not a crutch by any means.

  6. Craig says:

    If the Phillies are prudent, they’ll assign D. Brown an official mentor….someone like Raul Ibanez who can help him with his mental approach.  As the Futures Game showed, Brown can sometimes get caught in mental lapses….which can be disasterous in critical game situations. The talent is obviusly there, he just needs some guidance on the mental side of the game imo.

  7. Pete says:

    Craig -

    Do you have other examples of this? Or this just from one game?

    I ask because I’ve yet to hear that about Brown.

  8. Stu says:

    So…….the Phillies have a ton of speed and some live arms….but where are the mashers??
    And what is the deal with Joe Savery?  Doesn’t even make the watch list?  http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/97721114.html?cmpid=15585797

    However, looking back at the 2007 draft, it really was unimpressive after #19 (save for Porcello and Mike Stanton).

  9. Craig says:

    Pete -

    No specific examples that I’ve seen, but in the PhillySports.com article following the Futures Game baserunning incident(s), Brown admitted that he’s trying not to over-think and just play….which in my mind is a sign that he may need someone to help him on his mental approach. 

  10. Pete says:

    Savery could become a prospect again if they make him into a hitter and send him down to Lakewood to start from scratch.

  11. Drew says:

    Nice list. Singleton has really cooled off over the past few weeks. I think either pitchers have made an adjustment or he’s just getting tired (so young).  I’ll be watching to see if Singleton rebounds soon. Is Gillies right handed or a switch hitter? Just don’t tell me he’s a lefty too.

  12. jurnee16 says:

    he’s a lefty

  13. Pete says:

    Braves trade Yunel Escobar to the Jays for Alex Gonzalez. Guess they finally got fed up with him.

  14. jjg says:

    Escobar made a nice catch (from Glauss) & throw to turn DP against Phils.  For Braves to shake it up now, must see it as a blatant upgrade in a necessary respect.  Gonzalez is playing musical chairs for last 6 years however.  Experience over youth.

  15. Dino says:

    looks pretty bad as i expected; enjoy the team now because this run is just about over.

  16. Pete says:

    Yeah – Top-10 farm systems are just the WORST, aren’t they?

  17. Angelo says:

    Pete -
    Does Keith Law or Baseball Prospectus rank team’s farms systems? I was just curious if “top-10″ was an arbitrary number or not.

  18. Pete says:

    Angelo -

    We were around 15ish before the season and since then Dom Brown emerged as an even better prospect and Cosart and Singleton became top-50 guys and Colvin became a top-100 guy. Add that to the fact that so many big time prospects graduated to the majors and we are top-1o now.

    I’m almost positive Dino is a Mets fan.

     

  19. Stu says:

    Dino is certainly not a Mets fan.

  20. Pete says:

    Stu-

    Don’t think that’s your Dino

  21. jjg says:

    Dino the dinosaur was the mascot of Sinclair gasoline, back when you could get it for 29.9 cents/gallon.  He was green and had a long neck.
    Couldn’t pitch worth a damn.  His company is extinct. 

  22. Dino says:

    you guys are dreamers-

  23. jjg says:

    Be a dreamer.  If you don’t know how to dream, you’re dead.

    -  the late Jim Valvano, 
        former Head Basketball Coach of North Carolina State,
        1983 NCAA Div. I Champion

      * also rolled up his sleeves at Bucknell and Iona  

                                 

  24. joof says:

    I always find it interesting when a player like Jesus Sanchez comes around.  I wonder how the bigs have never had a full fledged pitcher/fielder. What an asset that would be, if a pitcher such as Kendrick could also play 2nd and bat 7th on his off days? ‘)

    I forget who sorta did that in St Louis…last yr.

  25. jjg says:

    Joof,  Players related to your wish:

    Mel Queen pitched decently for Reds after the rightfielder with a strong arm didn’t hit like his teammate Frank Robinson.

    And Cookie Rojas pitched for Phillies and played all 8 other positions during his career.  Was a handy man to have around.

       

  26. jjg says:

    Clarifying footnote:  utility Cookie was primarily a 2nd baseman.

  27. jjg says:

    Cookie also had 16 DH ABs for KC.  There was nothing the spunky Cuban couldn’t do.  Hail to #16!

  28. jkay says:

    Dodgers place LHP George Sherril on waivers!
    ouch.
    worth a look, a la JC Romero??

  29. Morty says:

    jjg: Re your post at #14; Braves are showing that they understand they’ll need more firepower if they are to withstand  the 2nd half push the Phils are likely to give them. Escobar is young, but Atlanta is trying to seize the moment. Amaro/ Gillick need to have an answer. My vote is for a strong bullpen arm, a closer to replace Lidge.

  30. Dino says:

    phillies have no one to trade for a good pitcher.

  31. Dino says:

    Sherrill is definitely worth checking out, but they say he’s lost his fastball. Relievers seem to bounce back.

  32. Brandon says:

    just wondering but has the roy halladay greatness watch ended? i liked reading those every fifth day.

  33. Ken Bland says:

    Sherrill is definitely worth checking out, but they say he’s lost his fastball. Relievers seem to bounce back.>>

    Why would the Dodgers release him if they thought he had something left?  He’s an asset, and they out and out released him.  They didn’t even try to trade him during trading season.  And the Dodgers are very qualified to be cost concious.

    Hurt?  Maybe.  But not pitching well.  And the Phils scouted him a year ago at this time and passed. 

  34. Dino says:

    The development of Kuo made him expendable; Sherrill also was making 4.5 mil.  They  had said that his problems are more mechanical.  He was an All Star last year, and the Dodgers gave up a pretty decent prospect for him

  35. Ken Bland says:

    It’s really amazing that Brett Myers name doesn’t come up much in trade rumors.  Ted Lilly’s name gets linked to the Mets, and he’s not having a good year.  Myers is, and is half the price.  Add Ben Sheets to the Lilly division of double the cost, and double the ineffectiveness.

    Ben Sheets has not had a good year, and will be a free agent again.  I’m guessing that a lot of scouts show up at his next couple starts hoping he’s further along in his recovery all of a sudden.  The Phils are said to be interested. 

  36. Ken Bland says:

    My next endeavor at trying to break the League race before it unfolds itself is to bracket the Phils next 12 games together.  Matched against the Cubs, Cards, and Rox, the Braves play the Brewers, Pads and Flafish.

    5 of 8 against the Cards and Rox might be doable after a 3 of 4 over the Cubs.  That’s high end optimism.  But if we can do that and the Braves run .500, that’ll start shaking the Phils are in trouble crowd at about 2.5 back.

    What are the chances?  Anything less than 3 of 4 against the Cubs is not good, although 3 of 4 negative to the Bucs, and fo for fo over the Reds equals 5 out of 8 which is .625, which we’ll take.

    Somehow, I wouldn’t rule out a sweep against the Cubs either.  It’s amazing Lou hasn’t killed someone.

  37. bob says:

    FWIW – Padres piked up Quenton Berry off waivers from the Phils andsent him to double A.

  38. Ken Bland says:

    just wondering but has the roy halladay greatness watch ended? i liked reading those every fifth day.>>

    Yo, Brandon, exciting news from the moderm technology department.  If I’m not mistaken, click on archives and go back to May 2010 and you can find a Halladay greatness watch post and read it a lot more than every 5th day if you’d like.

    One never knows, Pete might find he should have stuck with that all year before its over. 

  39. jkay says:

    even when the Cubs were good, the Phils still had their number.
    3 out of 4 i expect.

  40. jjg says:

    Morty,  Escobar is talented but havin’ a dreadful year.  Gonzalez is now Braves’ top HR slugger.  Who’d a thunk it?

    For a new closer, Pittsburgh’s Octavio Dotel might be available for right price.  I liked his game face recently against Phils.  19 saves in half a season with lowly Pirates.  Pretty good numbers for White Sox previous 2 seasons.  10.8 Ks per 9 this yr. 

    Blockbuster:  Domonic Brown, Kyle Kendrick, Ben Francisco and Brad Lidge for Andrew McCutchen, Ross Ohlendorf, Bobby Crosby and Octavio Dotel. 

  41. Ken Bland says:

    Rough first half for baseball in the 1/1-6/30 period on the television front.  Maybe its because of the fragmentation between cable and overexposure, but of the top 50 watched sporting events, baseball didn’t have one in there.  Of the top 50 watched cable sporting events for the time frame, only 1 baseball event cracked the top 50, the home run derby.  And you probably know the all-star game itself set a record low for viewership.  Small wonder.  Game time 8:45 Eastern, sun induced shutout the first few innings, etc.

    Obviously, the second half  is better with the post season and the races, but the sport better hope for continued off network high revenues.
    Watching national games is less and less habit all the time.

    The second most watched sports programming on cable during the first half of the year was LeBron James decision last Thursday. 

  42. jjg says:

    People are more concerned with paying bills than playing “Bills.”
    The Golden Era of Baseball and boob tube gatherings left with The Life Of Reilly.  Tony Kubek & Joe Garagiola – fossils.  It’s iPad, not Howdy Doody, time in jittery America. 

  43. Morty says:

    jjg: Forget Bobby, I’d rather have David Crosby circa 1971. Man that guy was good!

  44. Cat Stoker says:

    A very nice breakdown of the top prospects, Pete. The Inquirer tried the same last week and embarassed themselves.

    I realize Baseball America is not as credible a source as the amazing Dino the Mets Fan, but they have a much different view of the Phils system. This is what they wrote last week:

    “The Phillies’ system should be depleted, considering their trades for Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay …  but no organization has more talent in A-ball than the Phillies. They and have power arms in Brody Colvin, Jared Cosart, Trevor May and John Pettibone; up-the-middle talent in second baseman Harold Garcia, shortstop Jonathan Villar and catcher Sebastian Valle; and athletes to spare in the outfield, from Anthony Gose and Jiwan James to Domingo Santana. And first baseman Jonathan Singleton is fast emerging as one of the best pure hitters in the minors.”

    Stu — not sure why you don’t see mashers in the Phils’ system. They are certainly there. Brown, Singleton, Valle and Santana all project as power hitters, to a lesser extent so do Rizotti and Castro. Plus they have guys like Jiwan James whom scouts believe will eventually develop power.

    Bigger issues for the system are the lack of depth at catcher behind Valle, the complete absence of prospects at third base, and the question marks surrounding their top middle infield prospects (will Galvis ever hit enough to be more than a big league backup? will Villar field well enough? will Garcia have as much success against age-appropriate competition?)

    And I don’t understand the gnashing of teeth over Joe Savery’s struggles.  I’d love to see him make it, but if he doesn’t, so what? The Phils have three prospects on Baseball America’s mid-season list of the top 50 prospects in baseball – Brown, Cosart and Singleton. They were drafted in the 20th, 38th and 8th rounds respectively. The MLB draft is a completely different beast than the NFL or NBA drafts. If a franchise drafts well in later rounds and is willing to pay enough in above-slot bonuses to lure promising high schoolers away from college commitments, it can overcome the inevitable first-round busts like Savery. Look at that ’07 draft — yes, they gambled on Savery and lost, but in later rounds they drafted two guys who helped them land Roy Halladay (Travis D’Arnaud and Michael Taylor), one guy who helped them get Joe Blanton (Matt Spencer), one guy who helped them get Scott Eyre (Brian Schlitter), three guys who are now among the top 30 or so prospects in their system (Rizzotti in the 6th round, DeFratus in the 11th and Jiwan James in the 22nd), a few guys who have have been successful enough in the minors that you shouldn’t discount the possibility that they’ll become valuable arms in a big league bullpen some day (Luke Wertz in the 13th round, Jacob Diekman in the 30th) and one guy who has been mostly injured since the draft but still might eventually figure it out and become a prospect again (Jullian Sampson in the 12th round). So, yeah, Savery sure looks like a bust, but, all in all, it was still a productive draft for the franchise.

     

  45. Pete says:

    Cat -

    Thanks for the comment.

    The Phillies hit pretty well with their 1st rounders. People confuse baseball 1st rounders with NBA and NFL.

    I don’t really understand why the Phillies haven’t drafted infielders at all. My guess is that real SS and 2B prospects are very hard to come by, and if you don’t go early, you probably aren’t that good.

    It’s possible for this reason that they have decided to go the international way there (Galvis, Villar, Garcia)

  46. Bob says:

    Here’s a scouts review on Domomic Brown’s progress from the AFL to the ”futures game”, that was on ESPN site:

    The Phillies were reluctant to part with outfield prospect Domonic Brown in a deal for Roy Halladay at the trade deadline last year, and wound up getting Cliff Lee instead without having to part with Brown. (Of course, they eventually wound up with Halladay too, but that’s a different story.)
     
    Given the way Brown’s offensive production has exploded this season, it’s easy to see why the team was so hesitant to part with him. The 22-year-old outfielder hit .318 with 15 homers, 12 steals and a .993 OPS in 65 games at Double-A before being promoted recently. He hasn’t missed a beat at Triple-A, hitting .364 with four homers in his first 15 games there.
     

    Gary A. Vasquez/US PresswireLanky Domonic Brown has great all-around fantasy potential.

     
    Obviously he was one of the key players I wanted to see in person Sunday in the Futures Game; I wanted to see how much he had developed since I saw him extensively during the 2009 Arizona Fall League. At that time, his tools, athleticism and raw ability were obvious, yet so was the fact at times he looked a little awkward and uncoordinated both at the plate and in the field, partially because Brown wasn’t a full-time baseball player until he turned pro in 2006. It wasn’t difficult to project him eventually turning those tools into better baseball skills and smoothing out the rough edges in his game in order to become an impact player. It was just a question of when. Let me put it this way: This wasn’t a Reggie Abercrombie/Charlton Jimerson type, a talent with immense tools who just wouldn’t be able to hit.
    So what has changed since last season? Well, the first thing is just growing into his body, continuing to fill out his lanky 6-foot-5 frame, as Keith Law alluded to in his Futures Game recap. Brown has told me in the past that he is trying to gain pounds and strength yet not get too big and lose his speed. He even discussed his regimen of waking up early in the morning after a night game just to eat a meal before going back to bed, in order to help him maintain his weight. Well, whatever he has been doing is working.
    While observing the game, Keith and I also agreed that he has much better body control, and a lot of the awkwardness is no longer evident. He stays back better while hitting in order to get more consistent leverage in his swing. Before, he used to drift forward a little too much, which made it more difficult for him to hit off-speed pitches. But as I mentioned in an AFL blog, that was a correctable issue, and he has made good strides in that regard. I also think he’s a little more upright with his stance, which is helping him get a little more juice in his stroke. There’s good bat speed, his bat stays in the zone longer and he turns on mistake pitches. Brown has the pitch recognition and plate discipline to allow him to hit for average, as well. I still think his swing gets a little too big at times, but again, there has been improvement there, too.
    As a base stealer, Brown is still developing; he has 14 steals this season with just a 66 percent success rate, after going 23-for-33 last season. He’s succeeding just on raw speed at this point, and still needs to learn the nuances of reading pitches and getting good jumps. Even though he’s a big guy, Brown can be a consistent 20-steal threat in the big leagues with a little more refinement. Put that with his batting average/power combo and he becomes an enticing package for fantasy owners.
    At the beginning of the season, I thought Brown was another year away in his development, but one thing I have learned in the development of “toolsy” players is that great athletes such as Brown, who originally planned on going to the University of Miami on a football scholarship before signing with the Phillies, can progress and mature very quickly. That’s what has happened here. He’s progressing more quickly than many scouts expected.
    Brown departed the Futures Game early due to minor tightness in his right hamstring, but all indications are that it was just a precautionary measure, and he is expected to be right back in the lineup when his Triple-A club resumes play Thursday. A month ago, I wouldn’t have pegged Brown for anything more than a September call-up, especially with general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. publicly stating the club was not going to promote Brown unless they were going to play him every day. But the kid’s continued performance has made things interesting. Any kind of injury to one of the Phillies outfielders obviously would open up space, but Brown would be an upgrade to Raul Ibanez right now if given the shot, especially with Ibanez continuing to slug under .400 at age 38. There also have been reports the club is willing to at least listen to offers on free agent-to-be Jayson Werth if they can get someone (or multiple players) who could help them this season. That also would open up a spot for Brown. We’ll just have to see how things play out over the next few weeks.
    But suffice to say the difference in the Domonic Brown of 2010 versus the 2009 version is noticeable and significant, and he’s ready to make an impact now if given the opportuni

  47. Phil D says:

    Pete-

    No mention of Radnor grad Jordan Ellis in those rankings? I think hes in low A ball.

    Kelly Dugan? Wasnt he our first pick in 09. Not even worth mentioning?

  48. Phil D says:

    Pete/Stu-

    That Dino character is not me.

  49. Pete says:

    Ellis is actually pitching well, yeah. Just got promoted to Clearwater it looks like. But he was about 5 years too old for Lakewood. If he gets up to Reading and performs there, he’s got a chance.

    Dugan got some sort of bacterial infection or something and only has 11 AB’s this year. Probably should have mentioned him as he is a prospect of consequence, just don’t know if he’s any good yet.

  50. SABR says:

    First off, great job yet again on the list. This is always a favorite of mine, what originally led me to the site a year ago, and done very, very well.
     
     
    From the Sanchez discussion above, Brooks Kieschnick was a top OF prospect in the 90′s (2 time NCAA player of the year)..came up as an OF for the cubs but didn’t stick, bounced around with a few teams, eventually going down and becoming a relief pitcher. He got back in the bigs in 2003-04 for Milwaukee and was used as a pitcher, outfielder and DH during the year. Had a decent year in limited at bats in ’03 (7 HR in  70 PA) while throwing 55 mediocre innings. Flamed out in 04.
    So it has happened before, but its rare. If you are really good at either pitching or hitting, teams don’t let you get enough time to develop the other skill to make it good enough to be an asset at the ML level. A lot of these guys could probably do both (think CC Sabathia, who showed really good power and timing in his time in MIL even though it was only half a season and he never had to take ABs except for a random interleague series per year while in the AL) but its just not worth it to diminish his  skills/not work on his skills as a stud SP by having him focus on hitting. Of course, maybe if CC worked on his batting like Brett Myers did against him…

  51. joof says:

    Rick Ankiels best yr

                                   as a pitcher 11-7 record. 175 innings . 194 K’s. 3.50 era

                                    as a  batter .265 average. 25 homers 400 AB. 107 hits.

    In his only full pitching year he batted .250 with 2 hr’s and a triple. 68 AB. He might’ve been a great hitting pitcher if he had a longer pitching career.

    Whos your bet for best phillies hitting pitcher? I can think of at least one Id bet on. Im talking post 1980 cause I dont know of the players before them as much.

  52. Ken Bland says:

    Whos your bet for best phillies hitting pitcher?>>

    I don’t bet.  And on this subject, it’s not that curious a question that I’m even looking up who my hunch is to see just how good a memory is.  Fernando Valenzuela was a good hitter and played post 1980.

  53. joof says:

    “I don’t bet.  And on this subject, it’s not that curious a question that I’m even looking up who my hunch is to see just how good a memory is.  Fernando Valenzuela was a good hitter and played post 1980.”

    You have a way of making your comments sound so enticing to reply too.