It’s been a while since I posted about any of our young prospects. I would like to complete this series before I begin going to the Complex every day. These articles have been about players I have actually seen. So, they have been mostly about players at the GCL level – prep school draft picks, college draft picks, first-timers from the DSL, extended spring training guys before they went to Williamsport, and some young guys who repeated the GCL. There are going to be some extremely small sample sizes.
I had promised a reader that we had a lot more pitchers this season whose fastball ranges was in the 90s than in previous years. It has always seemed that we had an overabundance of pitchers whose fastball ranges started an ended in the 80s or started in the upper 80s and topped out at 90 or 91 mph. A lot of people felt that we targeted soft-tossing control pitchers, which would be okay if the control developed into command of all 3-4 pitches. And, we all know that happens ALL the time (note: sarcasm).
This season, enough pitchers had ranges completely in the 90s that I couldn’t help but notice. I have tried to condense the remaining pitchers into this article, in no particular order. Remember, these are pitchers I have seen. There may be a few more whom I haven’t seen. And, if you recall, I have already covered 5 pitchers who fit into this category – Nicoly Pina, Erik Miller, Brandon Ramey, Starlyn Castillo, and Hsin-Chieh Lin. So, if they can add a couple ticks to there fastballs …
- Adam Leverett was the Phillies 15th round pick in 2019 out of Gordon State College (GA). As a freshman, he posted a 4-3, 3.53 in 13 appearances, 11 starts. He walked 29 and struck out 46 (6.5 K/9) in 63.2 innings. As a sophomore, he posted a 9-0, 2.79 in 15 appearances, 14 starts. He walked 31 and struck out 83 (10.5 K/9) in 71.0 innings. The 20-year-old RHP posted a 2.45 ERA and 1.091 WHIP in 2 appearances in the GCL. He recorded 6 strike outs in 3.2 innings (14.7 K/9). His fastball was 90-93 mph. He finished the season in Williamsport. He posted a 1-2, 4.45 in 9 appearances. He walked 13 (4.1 BB/9) and struck out 22 (7.0 K/9) in 28.1 innings.
- Andrew Schultz was the Phillies 6th round pick in 2019 out of the University of Tennessee. Four-year, high school letterman. Named the #22 RHP among Baseball America’s Top 500 Prospects entering the 2016 MLB Draft. Named #34 RHP in the nation by Perfect Game 2016. Went 7-2, 2.40 in 58.0 innings pitched with 85 strikeouts as a senior. Two-way performer, hit .369 with 4 HR and 20 RBI as a senior. Also, he was a 3-year football letter man. As a Volunteer, he went 1-0, 3.31 with one save and 19 strike outs in 16.1 innings as a freshman. He made 15 appearances as a sophomore pitching 8.0 innings. He posted a 0-2, 11.25 with 9 strike outs. As a junior, he posted a 3-1, 3.24 in 25 appearances with 2 saves. He struck out 39 in 25 .0 innings. The 21-year-old RHP threw one scoreless inning in the GCL, allowing one hit and no walks. He threw his fastball 94-98 mph, touching 99 mph. He was sent to Lakewood where he posted a 0-2, 7.20 in 11 appearances. He struck out 15 batters in 10.0 innings pitched and maintained his fastball at 94-98 mph and touching 100 mph. (woo hoo!). How fast and how far he progresses will depend on his ability to command his fastball. Walks have been a concern.
- Andy Reyes was signed by the Phillies as a 17-year-old international free agent on July 14, 2017 out of the Dominican Republic. He went 1-1, 3.44 in the DSL in 2018, striking out 22 batters in 34.0 innings. The 19-year-old RHP posted a 3.66 ERA in 14 appearances in the GCL. In 19.2 innings, he struck out 18 batters (8.2 K/9), but his BB/9 rose from 5.8 to 6.9. His fastball is 90-93 mph.
- Brendan Bell was the Phillies 37th round pick in 2019 out of Central Florida Community College. In his only year at CFCC, Bell went 4-1, 4.31 with 4 saves in 19 appearances. He struck out 54 batters in 39.2 innings. After signing with the Phillies, the 19-year-old RHP made 14 appearances. He showed an arsenal that included a fastball that was 90-93 mph, a curve ball, and a slider. He pitched the final inning of the team’s no hitter against the Blue Jays.
- Brett Schulze was the Phillies 7th round pick in 2019 out of the University of Minnesota. Among his many accomplishments s a high school athlete, he was All-Area all four years, a three time letter winner, All-State his senior year, selected to the Play Ball! Minnesota All-Star Series. As a freshman at Minnesota, he made 14 starts in 15 appearances and posted 4-3, 5.50 in 70.1 innings, striking out 58 batters. As a sophomore, he posted a 9-0, 2.09 in 22 appearances out of the bullpen. In 51.2 innings, he struck out 47 batters. As a junior, he posted a 5-1, 3.07 in 30 appearances out of the bullpen. He struck out 55 in 41 innings and recorded 9 saves. After signing with the Phillies, the 21-year-old RHP made 2 GCL appearances before reporting to Williamsport. In 3.0 scoreless innings, he gave up one hit, walked one, and struck out three. He had a 0.667 WHIP and threw his fastball 91-93 mph. After his promotion to Williamsport, he posted a 0.38 ERA in 23.2 innings, striking out 34 but walking sixteen. In the larger sample size with the Crosscutters, his fastball was 92-94 mph, touching 95 mph.
- Carlos Betancourt was signed by the Phillies as a 16-year-old international free agent on July 2, 2017 out of Venezuela. He didn’t make his DSL until the following season and only saw limited action. He came stateside in 2019 and pitched as an 18-year-old. The RHP made 9 starts and posted a 4.06 ERA in 31.0 innings pitched. He struck out 32 batters for a 9.3 K/9. He walked 14 for a 4.1 BB/9. His fastball is 90-93 mph. He also throws a slider, curve ball, and change up.
- Carlos Francisco was the Phillies 28th round pick in 2019 out of Hillsborough Community College (FL). He pitched one season for the Hawks, posting a 3-2, 5.27 in 21 appearances (5 starts). He struck out 53 batters in 41.0 innings (11.6 K/9). The 19-year-old RHP saw significant innings after being drafted. He posted a 3.68 ERA in 14 games, 22.0 innings. He walked just 3 batters and his 1.2 BB/9 was among the lowest of pitchers who threw more than ten innings. He struck out 19 batters for a 7.9 K/9 and had a 1.227 WHIP. His fastball was 90-93 mph.
- Dalvin Rosario was signed by the Phillies as a 16-year-old international free agent on July 2, 2016 out of the Dominican Republic. He pitched 2 seasons in the DSL. His first as a 17-year-old was a nightmare – 2 appearances, no outs recorded, 11 batters faced, and 10 scored with the assistance of relievers. He fared better the next season, pitching 50.1 innings in 13 starts going 4-4, 4.47, and striking out 47 batters (8.4 K/9). The 19-year-old RHP came stateside in 2019 and posted a 2-1 record with a 7.13 ERA and 1.981 WHIP in 12 appearances. In 17.2 innings, he walked 16 and struck out 14 batters for a 8.2 BB/9 and a 7.1 K/9. He needs to work on his control as his walks and team high 10 wild pitches would attest. He throws a 91-93 mph fastball and a low 70s curve ball.
- DJ Jefferson was signed by the Phillies as a non-drafted free agent on July 2, 2019 out of Desert Oasis High School (NV). Among prep pitchers, Perfect Game rated him as the 2nd best in Nevada and the 113th nationwide. He was given a 10 rating by PG (potential very high draft pick and/or Elite level college prospect). They clocked his fastball at one of their events at 94 mph and had this to say about him “Low 90’S RHP who projects for more. Very good at WWBA and PG National”. In the GCL, the 18-year-old RHP impressed with a low 90s fastball in the 90-92 mph range. He complements it with a slurvy curve ball and a change up. In 10.2 innings, he posted a 1.69 ERA and a 1.031 WHIP. Stewart is an unusual post-draft pick up for the Phillies in that he is out of high school. I would guess that he went undrafted due to a strong college commitment to USC, but changed his mind when the Phillies came calling with checkbook in hand. I can’t help noticing his Las Vegas roots and wondering if Bryson Stott and/or Bryce Harper didn’t have something to do with this signing.
- Eduar Segovia was signed by the Phillies as a 17-year-old international free agent on May 9, 2018 out of Venezuela. He posted a 1-2, 0.59 in the DSL in 10 appearances. He struck out 18 batters in 15.1 innings (10.6 K/9). The 18-year-old RHP posted a 2.43 ERA and 0.843 WHIP in 10 appearances, 9 of them starts. He walked 10 and struck out a team high 39 batters for a 3.0 BB/9 and an 11.8 K/9 in 29.2 innings. His fastball was 91-93 mph, touching 94 mph.
- Engel Estevez was signed by the Phillies as an international free agent on January 18, 2018 out of the Dominican Republic. He made 10 appearances (6 starts) in 2018 in the DSL. He posted a 3.44 ERA and struck out 27 batters in 36.2 innings. As a 19-year-old in 2019, the RHP had a 1.050 WHIP in just 13.1 innings and posted a 4.73 ERA. He threw his fastball 90-92 mph. He had an off speed pitch at 79-80 mph.
- Gunner Mayer was the Phillies 5th round pick in 2019 out of San Joaquin Delta College (CA). In his only year at SJDC, Mayer went 0-1, 4.78 with 1 save in 25 appearances. He struck out 48 batters in 37.2 innings. After signing with the Phillies, the 18-year-old RHP made 4 appearances before being shut down in mid-July. He posted a 5.40 ERA, 1.320 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, and 10.8 K/9 in 8.1 innings (3 walks, 10 K). He showed an effortless, low 90s fastball (90-92 mph) with the promise of more velocity (maybe much more), a 76-78 mph curve ball, and change up in the low 80s.
- Jack Perkins was the Phillies 11th round selection in 2018 out of Stetson University. He posted a 2-3, 2.29 as a high school senior, striking out 49 batters in 33.2 innings. As a freshman at Stetson he struck out 37 batters in 34.1 innings. He made the weekend rotation in his sophomore season and posted a 7-5, 2.71 in 17 appearances, striking out 108 batters in 99.2 innings. As a junior, he posted a 11-3, 2.80 in 18 appearances, striking out 108 batters again in 106.0 innings. He made 9 appearances in the GCL and Williamsport after being drafted in 2018, walking 5 and striking out 20 in 20.0 innings. The 21-year-old RHP made 3 appearances in the GCL in 2019 before reporting to Lakewood and later Clearwater. He was a combined 0-5, 4.12 in 11 appearances (9 starts). He walked 14 (3.2 BB/9) and struck out 45 (10.3 K/9) in 39.1 innings. His fastball was 91-93 mph.
- Jonas De La Cruz was signed by the Phillies as an 18-year-old international free agent on September 19, 2016 out of the Dominican Republic. He spent age 19 season in the 2017 DSL and posted a 5-6, 3.71 in 15 appearances (14 starts). He walked 33 (4.7 BB/9) and struck out 60 (8.6 K/9) in 63.0 innings pitched. He came stateside in 2018 and pitched in the GCL. He posted a 5-2, 4.46 in 10 appearances (6 starts). He walked 19 (5.0 BB/9) and struck out 31 (8.1 K/9) in 34.1 innings. In 2019, the 21-year-old RHP was assigned to Lakewood at the start of the season, but an injury kept him in Clearwater. He made 8 rehab appearances in the GCL, 13.0 innings. He spots his fastball well and throws it 90-94 mph. He walked 4 batters (2.8 BB/9) and struck out 23 (15.9 K/9). His WHIP was 1.000 on the button.
- Jordi Martinez was signed by the Phillies as a 17-year-old international free agent on January 22, 2018 out of the Dominican Republic. In 14 appearances (10 starts) that summer, he went 1-4, 5.44 in 41.1 innings. He struck out 37 batters (8.1 K/9). The 18-year-old LHP posted a 3.00 ERA and 1.167 WHIP in 12.0 innings in the GCL. He walked 5 and struck out 13 for a 3.8 BB/9 and a 9.8 K/9. He throws his fastball 92-94 mph and throws a slider at 84-86 mph.
- Jose Ulloa was the Phillies 24th round pick in 2019 out of ASA College (FL). He made 14 appearances as a freshman and struck out 18 batters in 18.1 innings. As a sophomore, he made 18 relief appearances and struck out 35 batters in 30.1 innings (10.4 K/9). The 20-year-old RHP posted a 5.09 ERA in 5 appearances in the GCL. In 17.2 innings, he struck out 14 batters for a 7.1 K/9. He throes his fastball 90-94 mph and also throws a high-70s curve ball.
- Luis Pacheco was signed by the Phillies as a 17-year-old international free agent on October 3, 2016 out of Venezuela. He played his first two seasons in the DSL. He threw 7.0 innings in 2017. He posted a 5-3, 2.00 in 16 appearances in 2018. He walked 33 (4.7 BB/9) and struck out 61 (8.7 K/9) in 63.0 innings pitched. In 2019 as a 20-year-old in the GCL, the RHP posted a 2-1, 4.45 in 11 appearances. In 32.1 innings, he walked 16 and struck out 33 for a 4.5 BB/9 and a 9.2 K/9. His fastball is 91-93 mph. He throws a slider in the mid-80s and a curve ball in the mid-70s.
- Rafael Marcano was signed by the Phillies as an 18-year-old international free agent on April 25, 2018 out of Venezuela. He went 1-0, 1.35 in 9 DSL appearances in 2018. The 19-year-old LHP posted 4.24 ERA and 1.243 WHIP in 9 appearances, striking out 11 batters in 13.1 innings (7.4 K/9). The 19-year-old LHP posted an 0-2, 4.34 in 23.1 innings in the GCL. He walked 7 and struck out 24 for a 2.7 BB/9 and a 9.3 K/9. He throws his fastball 91-92 mph and his curve ball 76-78 mph. He improved his BB9 from 4.1 in ’18 to 2.7 last season.
- Robinson Martinez was signed by the Phillies as a 16-year-old international free agent on August 25, 2014 out of the Dominican Republic. The 21-year-old RHP started the season in Lakewood before being placed on the restricted list. He came off 60 days later and pitched one inning (1H, 1K) before being shut down for the rest of the season. He throws his fastball 91-96 mph. (But, he has progressed slowly through the system.)
- Spencer Van Scoyoc was the Phillies 19th round pick in 2019 out of the University of Central Oklahoma. In his junior year, he struck out 42 batters in 39.1 innings, but also walked 44 batters. The 21-year-old LHP made 2 appearances in the GCL before he was off to Williamsport. Across both levels, he struck out 21 in 22.0 innings, but walked 24 batters. His fastball is 91-93 mph but he needs to develop some control.
- Tyler Adams was the Phillies 27th round pick in 2019 out of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He pitched in one game as a freshman before being sidelined for the season by an injury. As a sophomore, he appeared in 10 games and struck out 20 batters in 8.1 innings pitched (21.67 K/9). He went 3-2 as a junior and struck out 38 batters in 27.1 innings (12.5 K/9). The 21-year-old LHP showed a lively arm in the GCL with a 90-93 mph fastball in 13 appearances. He struck out batters at a 7.2 K/9, but needs to improve on his 7.7 BB/9. (Note: in college he also played the field when he wasn’t pitching, so it will be interesting to see if focusing on pitching accelerates improvement with his control.)
- Tyler Burch was signed by the Phillies as a non-drafted free agent on June 12, 2019 out of Lewis-Clark State College (ID). In two years on his varsity high school team, he posted 5-2, 1.52 with 2 saves in 14 appearances. In 50.2 innings, he walked 20 and struck out 57 while limiting the opposition to a .181 average. In college, he saw limited action in his freshman and sophomore, pitching a combined 42.0 innings and walking 26 and striking out 37. As a junior, he made 15 starts and posted a 10-2, 2.87 in 84.2 innings while striking out 79 batters. Among honors received – NAIA Honorable Mention All-American, NAIA West Pitcher of the Year, All-NAIA West Team – Pitcher. As a senior, he made 13 starts and posted a 6-2, 3.16 in 74.0 innings while walking 15 and striking out 64 batters. Among honors received – 2019 Avista NAIA World Series Team, NAIA West co-Pitcher of the Year, All-NAIA West Team – Pitcher, NAIA West Gold Glove – Pitcher. The 21-year-old RHP made just one appearance in the GCL before being assigned to Williamsport. He pitched the final inning of a no-hitter in that game, striking out 2 of the 3 batters he faced with a fastball that was 91-92 mph. At Williamsport, he went 4-1, 1.56 in 11 appearances with 4 starts and a save. He walked 6 (1.6 BB/9) and struck out 32 (8.3 K/9) in 34.2 innings. He maintained his low 90s fastball at 91-93 mph in Williamsport.