Post Season Report Card–Starting Pitching–Lakewood, Williamsport, GCL

The post season report card series begins with a look at starting pitching at the lower levels of the organization.  Grades are based on my expectations for the player entering the season against themselves, not against other players.  Next up: Starting Pitching at LV, Reading and Clearwater


Harold Arauz, 21, Acquired from Houston in 2015; 19 starts; 6-6 with a 3.18ERA; 99IP 79H 24BB 85K; 4HR allowed; .216 opp avg; 1.04WHIP; .148 GO/AO; .215 vs LHH, .216 vs RHH, .190 opp avg last 30 days; 2.2BB/7.7K per 9; Arauz came into his own this year pitching very well throughout the year with the Phils trying to limit his innings in his first year of full season ball.  Very consistent, good command and showed the ability to put hitters away. Grade: B+; 2017: Clearwater

Seranthony Dominguez, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2011; 13 starts between Williamsport and Lakewood; 6-3 with a 2.34ERA; 65.1IP 42H 24BB 65K; .185 opp avg; 1.01WHIP; 1.40 GO/AO; 3.3BB/9.0K per 9; For Lakewood: 10 starts, 5-2, 2.42ERA: .202 opp avg; 1.12WHIP; 3.7BB/9.3K per 9; Dominguez had an excellent progressing quickly to Lakewood and continuing with a string of excellent starts for the Claws.  Walks need to come down a tick.  Grade: A-; 2017: Probably will begin in Lakewood but could move to Clearwater quickly.

Tyler Gilbert, 22, Phils 6th round pick in 2015; 23 starts, 7-9 with a 3.98ERA; 131IP 136H 26BB 106K; 10HR allowed; .264 opp avg; 1.24 WHIP; 0.99 GO/AO; 1.8BB/7.3K per 9; .266 vs LHH, .263 vs RHH, .320 last 30 days; Overall a decent year for Gilbert who struggled and seemed to run out of gas towards the end of the year.  He showed very good control this season but was very hittable at times.  Grade: C+; 2017: CLearwater

Franklyn Kilome, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2013; 23 starts; 5-8 with a 3.85ERA; 114.2IP 113H 50BB 130K; 6HR allowed; .259 opp avg; 1.42 WHIP; 1.02 GO/AO; 3.9BB/10.2K per 9; .272 vs LHH, .247 vs RHH, .227 last 30 days; 2.77ERA; 1.22WHIP; .233 opp avg post all star break; Kilome really struggled during parts of the first half of the season, lacking confidence and command.  He strung together a very nice second half to end the season on an up note and reemphasize he has lights out stuff when he is on.  Grade: B-; 2017: Clearwater

Jose Taveras, 22, Signed as a free agent in 2013; 25 games (20 starts) for Lakewood; 8-8 with a 3.28ERA; 137.1IP 116H 26BB 154K;15HR allowed; .229 opp avg; 1.03 WHIP; 0.79 GO/AO; 1.7BB/10.1K per 9; .230 vs LHH, .229 vs RHH, .152 last 30 days; Taveras dominated as much as any Phils minor league pitcher in the seasons final month and has a eye popping walk to strikeout ratio.  A very nice body of work for 2016.  Grade: B+; 2017: Clearwater rotation and could move quickly if successful.

Alberto Tirado, 21, Acquired from Toronto in 2015; 22 games (11 starts) between Clearwater and Lakewood; 7-1 with a 3.90ERA; 64.2IP 51H 42BB 102K; .217 opp avg; 1.44WHIP; 0.58 GO/AO; 5.8BB/14.2K per 9; .252 vs LHH, .182 vs RHH, .129 last 30 days; In 11 starts, 7-1 with a 2.19ERA.  Tirado started the year in Clearwater, struggled as a reliever and then was transitioned to the Lakewood rotation where he had a ton of success, overpowering the competition consistently.  The Phils have a dilemma with Tirado as he is Rule 5 eligible.  Very few (if any) go from Low A ball to the majors, however with Tirado’s much improved control in the second half of the season after becoming a starter, I think the Phils are going to opt to use a 40 man spot to protect him.  Grade: B; 2017: Clearwater rotation


Bailey Falter, 19, Phils 5th round pick in 2015; 13 starts; 1-6 with a 3.17ERA; 59.2IP 61H 17BB 59K; .257 opp avg; 1.31 WHIP; 1.55 GO/AO; 2.6BB/8.9K per 9; .235 vs LHH, .266 vs RHH, .277 last 30 days; Good progress but probably still not ready for a full season in Lakewood; Grade: B; 2017: WIlliamsport to start, Lakewood to finish.

Cole Irvin, 22, Phils 5th round pick in 2016; 10 games (7 starts); 5-1 with a 1.97ERA; 45.2IP 36H 8BB 37K; .209 opp avg; 0.96 WHIP; 1.29 GO/AO; 1.6BB/7.3K per 9; .250 vs LHH, .192 vs RHH, .184 last 30 days; Irvin is clearly advanced and was often significantly ahead of the competition.  I would like to see the K rate tick up a notch but threw very well; Grade: A-; 2017: Clearwater rotation

Adonis Medina, 19, Signed as a free agent in 2013; 13 starts; 5-2 with a 2.92ERA; 64.2IP 47H 24BB 34K; 5HR allowed; .203 opp avg; 1.10WHIP; 1.61 GO/AO; 3.3BB/4.7Kper9; .232 vs LHH, .176 vs RHH, .259 last 30 days; Nice numbers but Medina was far from overpowering, pitching to contact.  Grade: B+; 2017: Lakewood

Felix Paulino, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2013; 13 starts, 3-4 with a 2.89ERA; 71.2IP 64H 14BB 54K; .238 opp avg; 1.09 WHIP; 2.25 GO/AO; 1.8BB/6.7K per 9; .227 vs LHH, .248 vs RHH, .187 opp avg last 30 days; Paulino finished off the season very strong after having bumpy starts in 2 of his first 3 outings this season.  Grade: B+; 2017: Progressing nicely ans should head to Lakewood

JoJo Romero, 20, Phils 4th round pick in 2016; 10 starts, 2-2 with a 2.56ERA; 45.2IP 44H 11BB 31K; .256 opp avg; 1.20 WHIP; 1.94 GO/AO; 2.2BB/6.1K per 9; .256 vs LHH, .256 vs RHH, .252 opp avg last 30 days; Pitched well consistently without overpowering.  Solid progress.  Grade: B; 2017: Lakewood rotation

Ranger Suarez, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2011; 13 starts; 6-4 with a 2.81ERA; 73.2IP 61H 24BB 53K; .223 opp avg; 1.15WHIP; 1.53 GO/AO; .247 vs LHH, .214 vs RHH, .239 last 30 days; 2.9BB/6.5K per 9; Suarez was very solid but not overpowering for the Cutters.  He did not have a start in which he lasted less than 5 innings, giving workmanlike efforts each time out.  Grade: B+; 2017: Lakewood


Sixto Sanchez, 18, Signed as a free agent in 2014; 11 starts; 5-0 with a 0.50ERA; 54IP 33H 8BB 44K; .181 opp avg; 0.76 WHIP; 1.68 GO/AO; 1.3BB/7.3K per 9; .192 vs LHH, .177 vs RHH, .194 opp avg in August; Sanchez was consistently outstanding all year.  He did not have a start all season in which he gave up more then 1ER.  Grade: A+; 2017: WIlliamsport

Mauricio Llovera, 20, Signed as a free agent in 2014; 11 games (10 starts); 7-1 with a 1.87ERA; 53IP 39H 12BB 56K; 0HR allowed; .205 opp avg; 0.96 WHIP; 0.69 GO/AO; 2.0BB/9.1K per 9; .243 vs LHH, .181vs RHH, .161 opp avg in Aug; Not quite as good as Sanchez but still, very good for Llovera who gave up a total of 2ER in his final 6 starts of the year.  Grade: A-; 2017: Lakewood but his innings late next year will need to be monitored.

Nick Fanti, 19, Phils 31st round pick in 2015; 11 games (9 starts) 7-0 with a 1.57ERA; 51.2IP 36H 9BB 65K; .191 opp avg; 0.87 WHIP; 0.56 GO/AO; 1.6BB/11.3K per 9; .220 vs LHH, .184 vs RHH; Fanti followed up a good 2015 with an excellent 2016, dominating the opposition during almost every appearance.  Excellent command and an excellent strikeout rate.  Grade: A; 2017: While tempted to double jump based on output, the reality is that Fanti will still need to be stretched out to between 80 and 90 innings next year.  Expect that to happen in Williamsport with a late season call up to Lakewood if he has a successful June/July.

Will Stewart, 19, Phils 20th round pick in 2015; 11 games (7 starts); 2-3 with a 4.06ERA; 44.1IP 34H 19BB 35K; 1HR allowed; .217 opp avg; 1.20WHIP; 1.38 GO/AO; 3.9BB/7.1K per 9; .195 vs LHH, .217 vs RHH, .224 in August; Stewart completed his 2nd season in the GCL and made steps forward this season, most specifically with his control which was a significant issue in 2015.  Grade: C+; 2017: Williamsport

Luis Carrasco, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2013; 11 games (5 starts); 7-2 with a 2.18ERA; 41.1iP 35H 14BB 50K; .230 opp avg; 1.19 WHIP; 3.47 GO/AO; 3.0BB/10.9K per 9; .271 vs LHH, .212 vs RHH, .182 opp avg in August; Grade: A-; After two years in the Venezuelan Summer League, Carrasco came stateside for the first time this season and threw very well. At 21, old for the GCL and I think the Phils will try to move him to Lakewood to start 2017.

Kevin Gowdy, 18, Phils 2nd round pick in 2016; 4 games, 0-1 with a 4.00ERA; 9IP 9H 2BB 9K; .231 opp avg; 1.22 WHIP.  Very abbreviated numbers for Gowdy so extremely hard to judge. Grade: Inc.  2017: Unless he is overpowering in the Spring, I expect him back in the GCL to start 2017

35 thoughts on “Post Season Report Card–Starting Pitching–Lakewood, Williamsport, GCL

  1. Discount Kilome’s first 3/4 starts in April…when it was new, plus it was chilly for him, making griping awkward, and his metrics are 55/60FV for the remainder of the season.

    1. Yeah, I really have to challenge your grade of Kilome.

      It really wasn’t first half vs. second half. It really was his first 3 starts were bad. Cold weather or adjustment period, I am not sure. But if you remove his first 3 starts, his stats were sterling:
      – ERA: 2.72
      – K/9: 10.5
      – K/BB: 3.1
      – WHIP: 1.26
      – BB/9: 3.4

      Add in great scouting reports, premium velocity and only 21 in his first full season of pro ball, that doesn’t feel like a B- season to me.

      1. Agreed – I’d have given him a B+ or A-. He entered the year as a question mark and finishes the year as an exclamation mark!

      2. 15 of Kilome’s last 20 starts were quality starts ..he had 5 clunkers in that span from May thru his last start a few days ago. So his consistency was plus after the three April starts…which were the three lowest Game Scores for him all year.

      3. If you remove Arauz and Tirados 3-4 first stars (latinos vulnerable to weather too), you’ll see numbers way better than Kilome. Tirado and Arauz got very low batting average against them, Arauz whip is near Taveras. Tirado s K rate is beautiful.
        We all are in love with Kilome’s projection, but if his FB is as straight as laser, then it wont matter how hard he trhows it, he will be pounded left and right. I’m more pumped about Taveras and Arauz as future starting pitchers, and Kilome, Seranthony and Tirado as relievers.
        Any thought?

        1. Where did you read that Kilome’s fastball is “straight as a laser”? I have read a ton of scouting reports on him and this is the first that I have heard that.

          and I didn’t say that Tirado isn’t also a stud. I agree with you about him. his k rate is way off the charts. if he can maintain his command, his stuff is far better than Kilome’s.

          All I said was, I think that Kilome’s season is far better than a B- grade.

          1. I don’t think he’s ever seen Kilome pitch . . He has a very heavy ball which is why he gets a lot of weak contact. Even in some of his rough starts there were a fair share of bleeders and 100 hoppers.

  2. Obviously not every arm in the minors will pan out, so really encouraging to read the volume of pitchers they’ve got stocked in the low minors.

  3. Gregg,
    As usual an excellent analysis. Over the years I have looked forward to your information on each player. Thanks.

  4. The roster crunch will even hit here, where legitimately 10 of the SS A and GCL guys could end up at Lakewood. Gregg, you did a tough job trying to predict where everyone will start.

    1. There’s a suggestion that the Phils will experience an off-season roster crunch. Based on the season to date, here’s what a 40-man roster could look like:

      Pitchers – Velasquez, Eickhoff, Nola, Gomez, Neris, Eflin,Ramos, Thompson, Lively, Pivetta, Appel, Asher, Gonzalez, Tirado, Cordero, Murray, Harrison, Araujo, Morgan, L. Garcia, Klein, Pinto

      Catchers – Rupp, Alfaro, Knapp, Lino

      Infielders – Franco, Joseph, Hernandez, Galvis, Canelo,

      Outfielders – Herrera, Altherr,Williams, Quinn, Cozens, Pullin, Goeddel, Pujols, Tocci OR Asche

      The conclusion I draw is that the Phils are not at risk of losing a great talent in the Rule 5, even if they leave a slot or 2 vacant. Obviously the Phils will need to make some roster moves to flesh out the infield and perhaps add a veteran starter like Morton whose option the team could exercise.

      1. Almost half of the current 40-man are expendable and the Phils need to protect at least 7 (and MK said they might protect up to 14) so I’m not that worried about the roster spot. Although it will be interesting to see what happen to borderline candidates like Tocci, Pullin, Pujols, and high risk pitching prospects in lower minors such as Tirado, Seranthony, Arauz and Ranger.

        Regarding your list – Lino and Canelo will not be protected. I’m 100% that there will be better prospects that will be available in Rule V (left unprotected by teams with deep farm like the Phils) so that a waste of roster spot and not a wise use of the time service. Further, both didn’t perform well enough to catch anybody’s attention. Murray and Garcia are probably expendable too as they have no projection left – so they are what they are.

        1. KuKo……The Phillies may protect a full 40 and pass on the Rule 5. The OFers they will need to protect this year could be close to 7, (Herrera, Altherr, Quinn, Williams, Cozens, Goeddel)which is close to the max if not one more than what most teams normally protect.

          1. @Romus – I agree with the 6/7 OFs that needs to be protected. Excluding the FA to be and AAAA placeholders, I think the space will come from the fungible arms (i.e. Buchanan, Garcia, Murray Mariot, etc) and older prospects like Featherston, Ruf, Asche.

            I can see the Phils protecting either Tocci or Pullin but not both. For me, I think there will be better OF prospects available in the Rule V than both Tocci and Pullin.

            1. KuKo…remember if you play in the Rule 5, then you cannot protect 40…has to be 39 or less depending on how many you want to draft. MK’s last three Rule 5 picks..Featherston, Stumpf and Goeddel, IMO, do not inspire confidence in his Rule 5 success rate……maybe he is due.
              Featherston was when MK was asst under Jerry Dipoto in LA, but Jerry was 5/6 months away from plotting his escape from Mike Scioscia so MK probably did all the leg work.

            2. @romus, I know. that’s why I don’t see the need to protect the Canelo’s, the Lino’s, even the Tocci, Pujols and some of the eligible prospects below AA.

              I said before that the almost half of the 40-man are expendable and they need to protect Nick, Cozens, Appel, Lively, Pinto, Pivetta and possible Elniery Garcia. The last 8 spots will be determined by either a) fungible pen arms like Murray, Garcia, Araujo; b) older but MLB ready prospects like Asche, SevGon; and c) Rule V prospects either they protect (i.e. Tocci, Tirado, etc) or draft (from other teams).

              I agree that there will be a number crunch, but I think the Phils can protect all that needs to be protected and keep some spare parts that can help the 25-man roster.

      2. Remember that a 25 man roster will need to be constructed from the 40 man. The major league bench will need 40 man spots which will cause some of these names off the list.

        1. @Murray – good point. whoever is in the 40-man is expected to reinforce the 25-man if needed. prospects protected in the 40-man are either a) (close to) ready to contribute to the majors; or b) high end prospects. Tirado and probably Seranthony are the only ones I see that team can take a flyer and hide them in the pen.

        1. I hope you are correct on his aggressiveness this off-season.
          IMO, he seems to be holding back.
          The December Giles trade showed aggressiveness and risk-taking.
          That’s it so far.
          However, I am more interested in seeing more in the international market to acquire talent…more spending and creativity that is.
          All the usual teams have been doing it…now the Padres and Braves went full board into that market.

  5. My favorite young arms based primarily on scouting reports and informed voices here:
    1 Kilome
    2 Sanchez (only because he’s further away)
    3 Irvin
    4 Medina
    5 Tirado
    6 Gowdy (based mostly on pre-draft)

      1. v1, I’m about to say that too. Irvin lack of projection left limits his ceiling compared to the other pitching prospects that 8mark listed. I will probably include Fanti and Edgar Garcia in that list too.

      2. V., some gut feeling but from reading scouting reports I’m envisioning Randy Wolf. Some deception in delivery and command. Coming off TJ he hasn’t taken a linear trek upward in his development but thinking that will be to his advantage at an advanced age. Honestly if he wasn’t a lefty, I would have passed on him.

    1. I’d like to see Arauz and Taveras sustain over a longer period. Arauz would be the icing on the Giles trade if he turns into something like a solid 4 starter.

  6. So if Gregg’s starting spots for next year are accurate, and I have no reason to believe otherwise, Wmsprt will have 4 starters set, LKW would have 7, CLW would have 6. When you include the guys who are already in CLW and above, The Phils minor leagues are stacked with promising prospects. We all know, they all won’t excel. Some will reach their level of incompetence. Some will have injuries. Some might even take a step back. But with so many arms fighting for so few spots, next year could be an even better year than this year. I don’t want to jinx it but damn, confidence is high!

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