Lehigh Valley Weekly Report

Lehigh Valley has gone 2-4 since last weeks report with their scheduled mired by rain, sleet, postponements, roster changes and doubleheaders.  They are currently 4-7 in the Northern Division of the International league, 3 games behind division leading Buffalo. The ‘Pigs remain in Syracuse for three games in two days Wednesday and Thursday, followed by four games in Scranton.

‘Pigs Prospects–Cameron Rupp had a well documented very quick start, during which he set a Lehigh Valley team record hitting 4 homers in as many games.  His bat settled down after that and he is now hitting .231/.394/.731 after 33 plate appearances before going down with an oblique injury on Sunday.  Rupp continues to be very good defensively and his loss will hurt the IronPigs.  No timetable for how long he will be out but I am sure the Phils will want to be careful with the oblique.

Kyle Simon made a very inauspicious AAA debut lasting just 0.1inning and giving up 4 runs on two hits in addition to three walks.  After a couple mediocre outings, Simon looked very good his last time out going three scoreless innings while striking out 4.  Simon’s overall stats: 4 games, 0-1 with a 10.80 ERA, 1.80WHIP. Continue reading

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Box Score Recap – 4/14/2014

Severino Gonzalez with what looks like his worst start of the year, 3R/6H/3BB/4K in 5 IP. Ken Giles remains dominant, as it took him just 13 pitches to strike out the side in order in the ninth for his fifth save in a row. He’s allowed just three base runners in six IP on the year.

Cameron Perkins with his first AA homerun. He’s OPSing nearly 1.200 now, and has 10 XBH in 44 trips to the plate. Brian Pointer also remains hot for CLR – he’s OPSing over 1.000 now after a 2-3 with 2BB and a triple. Both numbers are surely sustainable and not at all subject to any mention of small sample sizes. No, sir.

Mark Leiter Jr. got the victory for Lakewood, despite a less than stellar line that reads 4R/7H/1BB/8K over 6IP. Carlos Tocci had four hits and stole a base in that contest, while J.P. Crawford was 2-4 with a walk, a steal and three runs scored.

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XST Phillies vs. Yankees; April 14, 2014

When I arrive at these games, I have to decide which one to watch.  I look for prospects or rehabbers or starting pitchers.  Lately, I’ve been drawn to the Aaron Altherr game.  Today, Drew Anderson was warming up for the game on Ashburn Field.  Since I couldn’t remember seeing pitch before, I decided to watch that game.  Good choice.  The Phillies won 3-0, and Anderson and Jonathan Musser combined for a 3 hit shutout. Continue reading

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General Discussion – Week of 4-14-2014 – Tony Gwynn vs. Ben Revere Edition

Here’s your general discussion for all things Phillies. I want to talk about center field.

Ben Revere has been out of the lineup for four straight games now, dating back to the day after he made this remarkable catch against Milwaukee on Thursday. Tony Gwynn Jr. Remains in the lineup for tonight’s game. Seems like either Ryne’s rolling with the hot bat right now, or Revere’s more dinged up than the club’s letting on. So who’s the better choice, anyway? Continue reading

Monday Roster Shuffle

Normally roster moves don’t make their own posts unless it is a big promotion, but today was a bunch of shuffling with impact.

Lehigh Valley:
Added: Sebastian Valle (REA), Justin De Fratus (PHI), Tyson Gillies (CLW), Brad Lincoln (PHI)
Lost: Mike Nesseth (REA), Cameron Rupp (DL), Andres Blanco (DL), Justin Friend (Released), Luis Garcia (PHI)

Reading:
Added: Chad Carman (CLW), Mike Nesseth (LHV)
Lost: Aaron Altherr (CLW), Sebastian Valle (LHV)

Clearwater:
Added: Aaron Altherr (REA – DL), Deivi Grullon (EST)
Lost: Chad Carman (REA), Tyson Gillies (LHV) Continue reading

Where have all the pitchers gone?

There has been a lot said about the lack of pitching in the Phillies system.  A lot of blame has been put at the feet of the development staff for failing to get major league players out of the talent in the system.  There have been other complaints about the prospects traded away or the prospects traded for as well.  The end result has been that I only had 8 pitchers in my Top 30 Phillies prospects and of those only 2 starting pitchers began the year healthy (Biddle and Gonzalez).

The factor that no one seems to be talking about is the composition of the Phillies drafts over the past 6 years.  With the “oldest” prospects in the system being from the 2008 draft class, it seemed like a good place to start.  So here are all the pitchers the Phillies drafted either for high money or are still in the system from the 2008 to 2013 drafts. Continue reading

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Box Score Recap – 4/13/2014

David Buchanan threw just one inning in anticipation of A.J. Burnett maybe not being able to go on Wednesday this week. By all accounts, Buchanan would be his replacement. The LV bullpen struck out eight over eight innings to hold off Rochester. Cesar Hernandez, Cam Perkins and Tommy Joseph all with multi-hit games, as A.J. Cole, the Nats #2 prospect, (per BA), got the victory over Jesse Biddle. Biddle pitched fairly well – 3R/0ER/4H/2BB/6K in 4IP – but was relieved after just 79 pitches. He was charged with two throwing errors in the third and another in the fourth, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that was a big part of why he was pulled.

Cam Rupp left the LV game with what seems to be a back/oblique injury, and Kelly Dugan left the REA game after being hit on the hand/wrist with a pitch. I haven’t seen further update on either man, so let’s cross our collective fingers. (a late note: Chad Carman was on Twitter this morning saying he is on the move. My guess is he fills a hole in AA or AAA while Rupp goes to the DL. If Koyie Hill is next on the big league depth chart, it could be Carman to AAA as his back-up and leave Joseph and Valle to continue what they’re doing at AA).

Aaron Altherr joined CLR for what’s likely to be a very temporary stop on the way to his destination in AA. He had a BB and a K in four trips to the plate, while Brian Pointer tallied The Threshers’ lone XBH – he’s OPSing close to .900 thus far. A decent start from Colin Kleven in that one – 3R/7H/0BB/4K in 6.1IP. Dan Child and Colt Murray also with good outings there in relief, while Manny Martinez and Yacksel Rios‘ relief appearances appear to be the highlight of the Lakewood tilt.

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Box Score Recap – 4/12/2014

Not much to say about the LV double header. Maikel Franco lowered his BA to .108 after an 0-6 on the day, and he added two strikeouts. Cesar Hernandez playing 3B all day for a Reading double dip, as Cameron Perkins collected five hits, including two doubles and a triple, and Perci Garner made a good showing – 2R/5H/1BB/5K in 5IP. Just over 2/3 of his pitches were strikes and he induced six groundball outs. Ken Giles got five outs and only two were Ks. Unacceptable.

Cole Hamels pitched well in his rehab start for CLR (insert “old for the league” joke here), while Tyson Gillies had a pair of hits. Brian Pointer has seven hits in his seven games. J.P. Crawford had two hits for Lakewood, and Ranfi Casimiro did not have a great day – 5R/3ER/4H/1HR/2BB/3K in 2.2IP.

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Clearwater Round-up thru April 12, 2014

Along with two Flyers games I managed to watch a Threshers’ game and 3 XST games.  I think I saw about 6 runs scored in the 4 baseball games.  I saw way to many errors and fielding mistakes during the same period.  I probably saw close to 400 pitches … just by pitchers in the Phillies organization.

First, the Threshers. Continue reading

Fun with PECOTA Comps

Yesterday my Baseball Prospectus Futures Guide arrived.  I highly recommend it, the e-book is a bit cheaper, but I am partial to hard copies of prospect books to grab at any point.  You should also buy it to support the great work the BP prospect team does including two of our new writers CJ Wittmann and Chris King.  But enough of that.

The BP guide includes three comparable players for each prospect.  They represent a range of outcomes, and aren’t always accurate due to sample sizes and other weird statistical things.  These comparables come from PECOTA and I have also included the top 10 PECOTA player comparables overall from BP’s website for each Top 10 prospect. (as well as 2014 MLB projection, because they are fun)  These could change by next week as players change how they are, but keep in mind that PECOTA has a lot of data to work with and the more data it is given, the more accurate it becomes.

1. Maikel Franco – 3B (.255/.282/.427)
Handbook: Lonnie Chisenhall, Josh Vitters, Wilmer Flores
Top 10: Lonnie Chisenhall, Josh Vitters, Wilmer Flores, Mike Moustakas, Dayan Viciedo, Nick Castellanos, Nolan Arenado, Aderlin Rodriguez, Matt Dominguez, Edison Rincon Continue reading