The performance tonight of prospect JA Happ is worthy of special recognition. Happ started and went seven dominant innings giving up only one run (in the 7th) on 4 hits. He walked two and struck out thirteen. He threw 110 pitches, 75 of them for strikes and lowered his ERA to an outstanding 2.72. He was pinch hit for in the bottom of the 7th and left with a 3-1 lead. This is the fourth consecutive excellent performance by Happ, and I would hope discussions have begun about the possibility of replacing Adam Eaton, who has drifted back into the same doldrums that have followed him the last several years as a Phillie.
Another week, another Phillie makes the grade
Donald has quietly had a productive first full season in the big leagues last year, hitting .310/.409/.447 in 238 plate appearances with low Class A Lakewood and .300/.386/.491 in 336 plate appearances with high Class A Clearwater. The success has carried over into 2008 for Donald, who in 23 games is hitting .337/.444/.470. Donald is a selective hitter with a line-drive swing, but some scouts question whether he will be able to stay at shortstop or whether he has the hitting tools to ever become more than just a utility man. In an organization that boasts Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley in the middle of its big league infield—and with Utley signed through 2013, Rollins through 2010 with a club option for 2011—it’s not quite the ideal situation for Donald, but he is increasing his value with every productive game.
Again with the utility player tag. Sometimes BA underrates until its too late, but we’ll see where Donald ends up at the end of this season.
There will be a chat at BA at 2:30 Eastern.