The Phillies AAA and AA squads played the Yankees at the Complex today. Sort of. With a lot of minor league players making the bus trip to Bradenton (9 position players and 8 pitchers), there were some interesting entries on the line up cards. For instance, the AAA outfield consisted of Damek Tomscha in left, Dylan Cozens in center, and Luke Williams in right. And, Jesus Henriquez played second base.
The AAA squad lost 3-1, Brandon Leibrandt pitched 5.0 innings allowing one run. Frazier and Berry finished the game. (The home plate umpire for this game was atrocious.)
Ranger Suarez started the AA game and pitched 4.0 scoreless innings. They tied 4-4 when the Yankees scored some late runs. Mickey Moniak lined a 2-run triple to right center field to start the scoring but was stranded by the next three batters. Cord Sandberg crushed two solo HRs to right to close out the Phillies’ scoring.
Adam Haseley took the bus to Tampa for the Group Three game.
One of you asked for updated work groups. Impossible. The way they move players around makes it difficult to determine who is in which group. The fact that they didn’t distribute original work groups is doubly frustrating. They did eventually make a list of all the minor league players in camp, but that doesn’t help with work groups.
I don’t know if any of y’all noticed, but I posted last week’s open discussion on March 19th. In it, I pointed out the level of inactivity by Sixto Sanchez. On March 20th, Jim Salisbury posted a story stating that Sanchez was recovering from the flu. Coincidence? I think not.
More roster moves: The Phillies optioned Zach Eflin, Roman Quinn, and Zac Curtis to Lehigh Valley. They also released Cameron Rupp. That leaves 30 players in camp. However, the opening day roster would appear to be set. Eickhoff, Leiter, and Hunter will start the season on the DL. Middlebrooks will be assigned to Lehigh Valley and go on the DL. Arrieta will be optioned or start the season on the DL and be back up in time for his April 8th start. The remaining 25 players will comprise the opening day roster unless a trade or injury causes more movement. I have at least one friend down here who is convinced that we will hear of a Hernandez trade imminently.
The Phillies signed Alexi Amarista to a minor league contract. The infielder/outfielder will likely be assigned to Lehigh Valley.
And, finally, the minor league releases have begun. I have heard of at least six so far. The only one I could verify through multiple sources was Luis Encarnacion. If true, this represents a big admission of failure financially. The 20-year old was signed as an international free agent for $1M on August 29, 2013, three weeks after his 16th birthday. Except for a 4-game stint with Clearwater last season when he went 4 for 13, Encarnacion spent his entire 4-year career in rookie ball, 2 in the GCL and 2 with Williamsport.
This is the worst part of following these guys. I become attached to them and hate when their dreams aren’t realized.
I’m going to the Phillies’ final game tomorrow. Arrieta is supposed to be starting.
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