25 thoughts on “Arizona Fall League rosters announced

  1. I think they’ve chosen wisely for the fall – that’s a good list of top prospects that appear ready to take the next big step forward. I’m a little surprised that Marson’s on the list and that Donald has been left off, but that’s picking at the margins. It’s a solid list.

  2. Marson has been really damn impressive this year, and he’s definitely deserving of a roster spot. Donald has struggled with consistency, but your point is definitely valid. For me though, Marson’s complete performance gives him the nod.

  3. Well, here’s how I look at this.

    Marson may have a bright future, but he’s young and he has another player ahead of him at the same position. Unless they think he’s a future star (and nothing in his statistics now say he’s headed for true stardom; rather, they say he is headed for a potential big league career of unknown quality and duration), there’s no urgency at that position.

    By contrast, I view Donald’s performance to be borderline outstanding this year and they need a third baseman now. If you have him and Costanzo on the team at the same time, you can get a good feel for both players and see who should stay in the infield and who might become an outfielder. Also, I think Donald’s performance (which has seemed pretty consistent to me) suggests he’s ready for a challenge.

    But, again, I’m okay with them taking Marson. It’s all good.

  4. Good points, and I definitely understand where you’re coming from, but at this point Donald is far more blocked than Marson at their current positions. Many have talked about Donald making the move to 3B and possibly making his way through the system in that manner, but until that happens I can’t get too excited (mostly because I’ve seen far too many minor leaguers make failed position changes and are just never the same afterward). Marson, on the other hand, is only blocked by Ruiz and Jaramillo. Although I like Ruiz, and Jaramillo has shown himself to be of the Johnny Estrada mold, Marson just has far more upside IMO. No catcher in our system hits with the regularity of Lou, and his nearly 50 BBs and 60+ runs/rbi give me much hope for his future.

    Like you said, either one would’ve been fine by me, but I’m just glad Lou is getting the respect he deserves.

  5. Marson makes sense to me. Although he is almost 2 years younger than Donald, he is the one with the full season in high A ball. Also agree he is less blocked than Donald. Catcher is a position that requires significant playing time to 2 players to make it through a season, so you can’t really be fully blocked by 1 guy. Also, injuries more likely at C.

    This is all beside the polnt, since the Phillies don’t have completely free choice on whom to send. They essentially bid for which positions they want to supply to the AFL team. Perhaps a C slot was available but a middle IF slot was not.

  6. Will there be a posting of the roster (invitees) for Instructional Ball? If there is, can you also post some sort of criteria that the Coaches use to make their picks?

  7. A lot of Latin guys play in their home countries’ leagues in the offseason. Maybe Garcia’s planning to play in the DR Winter League instead. If so, that won’t be so bad, even though the AFL would be preferable.

  8. THe way it works, to my knowledge, is that teams “bid” for certain spots on the diamond. For example, if the Phillies want to send two middle infielders, they will try, but if another team has a higher priority or puts that higher on their list than the Phillies, they get that spot. So, the Phillies might have wanted to send Cardenas or Donald, but couldn’t get a spot because they wanted an extra spot for a pitcher like Savery.

  9. Marson might become our most trade-able commodity. Young catchers that can hit are priceless in baseball. The Braves just traded one for Texiera. I love what Lou has done this season! I also like the other prospects going to the AFL. Also, I am surprised I haven’t read any Golson bashing from you haters out there. Looks like the powers that be think higher of him than those on this blog. One name that does surprise me is Bisenius. I thought CC should be there instead of going to LatAm over the summer. Doesn’t look like they expect CC to contribute much in the bigs next year.

  10. Why are you being tough on Golson? Don’t you realize that in the past week he has doubled – doubled! – his walk total at Reading. Now his strikeout to walk ratio is 20-1. The guy is an on-base machine. His on base percentage is around .580. No, wait … that’s his OPS. Never mind. (Seriously, I’ve gone back and forth on Golson, but I’m pretty sure he’s fodder at this point. They have enough speedy outfielders already, and I think a guy like Berry brings more to the table.)

    I don’t have any problem with Marson going. I would’ve like to have seen Donald go, and get some time at 3b, but obviously with Costanzo there, that’s not going to happen. Ruiz and Jaramillo don’t look like All-Star types, but should certainly be servicable MLB players. So, if Marson is an improvement on either of them, that gives the Phils some nice trade bait.

    - Jeff

  11. A few Costanzo points…
    1)-Let the kid develop. He’s 23 years old and from what I’ve seen-(25 Reading games) He has incredible power and a good glove, plus he plays his butt off. Utley was 24 when he made his major league debut, Howard was 25 yrs. old
    3)-I want a guy like Costanzo that will finish strong….hint…playoff time.
    4)-11 of his 33 errors were in April when it was 35 degrees outside. Plus Reading 1st baseman aren’t very good.He has atleast 4 balls hit to 3rd every game. Multiply that by 141 games, and his fielding isn’t too shabby. He also gets to alot of balls most 3rd baseman don’t try for. He does needs to refine his footwork.
    5)-He leads the entire Phillies minor league system in HR, RBI, Runs Scored, Walks. K’s…Yes, he strikes out alot, but Strikesouts come along with power numbers.
    6)-Jason Donald will not be switched to 3rd base. He doesn’t have the arm and power numbers, plus he has 25 errors plus between Lakewood & Clearwater at SS. Same for Cardenas… he will remain at 2nd or be switched to the OF. He has a great bat, but limited arm strength.

  12. Jeff,

    I completely disagree with you regarding Berry vs Golson. Berry is proving himself to be a poor man’s Michael Bourn, Golson doesn’t walk enough for us, but he brings a lot more power to the table than Berry does. I can’t comment on speed and arm strength, but Golson is supposedly one of the highest rated guys in the system for these two tools.

    Free Dominic Brown, the guy has been playing great lately and has his average up in the .290 territory, does he play in an instructional league this fall?

  13. The reason why it’s silly to bash Golson is that he’s only 21. From the get-go, he was brought in with the understanding that he was a raw, high-risk/high-ceiling player. While there’s good reason to believe that those kinds of players fail to bring back enough return in the average case, sometimes they do in fact succeed, and taking that into account, it isn’t really fair to criticize Golson for the fact that he hasn’t developed along the lines of a lower-risk player. It’s undeniable that he has improved in some areas, and he still has a long road ahead of him.

    He’s only 21, and plate discipline, at that age, can still be taught. Speed and extra-base power can’t. And in any event, there actually are good players out there who don’t walk a lot. Plate discipline is the most important quality there is, but it isn’t the be-all. A player who, say, hits .300 with 70 XBH, 40 steals, and 30 walks a season will be tremendously overrated, but that won’t change the fact that he’ll still be a very good and very valuable player.

  14. Interesting notes about Costanzo and Donald. I was not aware that Donald lacked the arm strength to play third – if so, that changes the picture a bit.

    Right now it looks like, over the next 3 years, the Phils are going to have to fill third base and will have a ton of options behind the plate and in the outfield. I think you can rest assured that Rowand will not re-sign (which is too bad) and Burrell will play out the string next year. The team will probably also keep Victorino as a full time outfielder. Aside from that, it’s anyone’s guess. If they do it right, they’ll make everyone play for their jobs and things will sort themselves out over the next couple of years – I don’t think they’ll do badly, but, currently, there’s no way of knowing if anyone will emerge as a star and that includes the current cast of characters at the major league level. I mean, to be frank, no one really knows if Jayson Werth can be a 20-25 home run a year, .300 BA, type of player, but it’s definitely possible.

    If this were my team, I would probably not spend my free agent money in the outfield unless a deal came along that I could not turn down. Rather, I would: (a) try to sign a legitimate closer (Tom Gordon be damned) and maybe a supporting bull pen guy; (b) return Brett Myers to the rotation, where he can be absolutely devastating in tandem with Cole Hamels: (c) slowly fill the rotation and rest of the bullpen with young arms from the farm; (d) try to keep the young stars happy, or at least not make them mad – although, really, none of their stars can go anywhere for the next three or four years; (e) fill the outfield and catching positions with existing and players from the farm system – a trade could also be a possibility – we should have catching talent to offer; and (f) re-sign Iguchi – it doesn’t sound like a big deal, but if we have a big injury in the middle infield anytime over the next two years, we’ll be glad we have him – he may also play some third base next year.

  15. I don’t think you can “teach” plate discipline. You can teach setup at the plate and swing mechanics, but I don’t think you can teach a batter to see the spin on a slider or the tilt on a curve ball. Those are skills that a player either has or doesn’t have. Sometimes it takes a while for it to come out in a player, and repetition and practice definitely helps, but I’m not entirely sure you can teach plate discipline.

  16. I guess Golson v. Berry could become this site’s version of “Picard or Kirk?” (and we all know that Kirk had trouble with the low-and-away slider). Obviously, we won’t know for another five years. I just think that if Golson is a .300 hitter with 70XBH, 40 steals and 30 walks, that he might not be as valuable on this team (which potentially has 4 guys who will hit you 30 homers, even if you substitute Constanzo for Burrell down the road) as a guy who would hit .320, draw 80 walks, steal 60 bases, but only have 40XBH.

    We’ll just agree to disagree and move on. Brown is 10 for his last 15, eh? Nice.

    - Jeff

  17. Heh. Tell you what – if we have one guy who hits .300, 70 XBH, 40 steals, 30 walks, and another guy who hits .320, 40 XBH, 60 steals, 80 walks, I think we find room in the outfield to play both of them.

  18. Hehe. Yeah, I guess you’re right Taco Pal. If both of those guys attain that ceiling (an unlikely scenario because we are talking about the Phillies here), then they will both find a spot in the outfield. My feelings are that Berry is the better prospect, largely because he seems to have A+ speed. The more probable ceiling for both of those guys is that they will be a variation on Victorino and Bourn.

    Still, the thought of an outfield consisting of Victorino, Bourn, Berry and Golson would be interesting (even if it lacks power). We could enter them in the Penn Relays.

    - Jeff

  19. It’s nice to see the Phillies sending prospects to AFL. In past years, they have sent some guys that have not even been in the organization the next spring.

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