It’s always nice to read good reports on our prospects. Or, is it?
Within the past 10 days, two articles have been published about our prospects who attended Instructs. One by Jim Salisbury for NBC Sports on October 29th and one by Jonathan Mayo for MLB Pipeline on November 6th.
Now, I’m not saying that we should ignore what these two sport writers have quoted in their articles. What I’m suggesting is that we take what they wrote with a grain of salt. maybe a couple grains. This is my semi-annual plea to let hyperbole shape your expectations regarding players.
First, neither writer saw the players they wrote about in person. They haven’t even seen any video of the players more recent than 2019. The Phillies alternate training site in Allentown was closed to scouts and media this summer. The Phillies chose to keep scouts and media out of Instructs.
So, where are they getting their information?
Second, both received quotes on players from Josh Bonifay, Director, Player Development. Bonifay heads up player development for a minor league system that is rated in the back end of the bottom third in baseball. He has also heard his owner criticize player development in an interview several weeks ago.
So, any glowing comments about prospects can be seen as a little self-serving.
Salisbury wrote about pitchers Mick Abel, Blake Brown, Billy Sullivan, Carson Ragsdale, infielders Kendal Simmons, Luis Garcia, Casey Martin, and outfielders Simon Muzziotti, Johan Rojas, and Baron Radcliff.
He published quotes from Bonifay about Abel, Brown, Muzziotti, Rojas, and Radcliff.
Mayo wrote about pitchers Mick Abel, Francisco Morales, James McArthur, catchers Rodolfo Duran, Edgar Cabral, Casey Martin, Kendal Simmons, Jonathan Guzman, Luis Garcia, and outfielders Matt Vierling, Baron Radcliff, and Johan Rojas.
He had extensive quotes by Bonifay on Abel, Morales, McArthur, Duran, Cabral, Garcia, and Rojas.
It’s all nice, but Mayo is a national writer and doesn’t follow the Phillies closely. He made a mistake when he referred to Cabral as a non-drafted free agent after the 2015 draft. Cabral was the Phillies 11th round pick and received a $100,000 bonus, the max before dollars were accrued against the draft allotment.
Most of the quotes are effusive. But, I caution against buying into the hyperbole. Otherwise, you’ll likely be disappointed at some point down the road. Much the same as most of you were when Luis Garcia didn’t live up to everyone’s inflated expectations after his GCL season.
For example, based on Bonifay’s statement about Mick Abel, we should expect him in the Phillies’ rotation next season, “Super impressive. He came in ready to compete. He’s been electric, up to 98 (mph) with his fastball, and his changeup and slider are both excellent.”
It’s going to take time for any of these players and others to progress through the system. Most will not live up to expectations.
So, please take reports like these with a grain of salt. Don’t let them skew your expectations.
The Phillies received RHP Rodofo Sanchez from Tampa as the PTBNL in the Edgar Garcia trade. He was assigned to Williamsport. For now. By my calculations, he was signed to a future services contract during the summer of 2016 and wasn’t placed on a roster until 2017. He becomes Rule 5 eligible in 2021.
The rumors are true. I learned a couple weeks ago that the minor league changes we heard of were going to happen. I waited for the formal announcement. When the Yankees announced their affiliates for next season, that verified what I had heard.
The Phillies will have six affiliates –
- Triple-A: Lehigh Valley,
- Double-A: Reading,
- Advanced-A: Jersey Shore (formerly Lakewood) switching with Clearwater into a new geographically better 10-team league,
- Single-A: Clearwater,
- Complex League: Gulf Coast League Phillies, and
- International: Dominican Summer League Phillies.
The Phillies would still like to have two entries in the GCL and DSL and haven’t ruled that out completely, yet.
Swapping the Jersey Shore (Lakewood) and Clearwater franchises makes sense. Young players can spend their first couple seasons at and near the Complex, rather than leaving the cozy confines of Clearwater as they have in the past for Williamsport and Lakewood (Jersey Shore).
Another reason this makes sense is because the Phillies will soon have a dormitory built on the Complex grounds. The Phillies are curtailing the host family program that provided rooms for players in Williamsport and Lakewood (Jersey Shore).
Nine free agency eligible minor leaguers elected to exercise their option and declared free agency –
- CF Mikie Mahtook (LHV),
- C Jonathan Lucroy (LHV),
- LF Nick Martini (LHV),
- C Christian Bethancourt (LHV),
- OF Grenny Cumana (REA),
- 3B Jose Gomez (REA),
- 3B Jose Antequera (REA),
- RHP Gustavo Armas (REA), and
- RHP Alejandro Requena (REA).
This is the Phuture Phillies Open Discussion for Phillies and other baseball topics.
- September 30, 2020 – Expiration of the Professional Baseball Agreement between MLB and MiLB
- October 15, 2020, 5:00 PM EDT – Close of the 2019 international signing period
- October 28, 2020 – Trading resumes, day after the World Series ends
- November 1, 2020 – Deadline for teams to make qualifying offers to their eligible former players who became free agents
- November 11, 2020 – Deadline for free agents to accept qualifying offers
November TBA – GM Meetings (Nov. 11-14, Scottsdale, AZ in 2019) November TBA – Owners meetings (Nov. 19-21, Arlington, TX in 2019)
- November 20, 2020 – Rosters set for Rule 5 Draft
November TBA – MLBPA executive board meeting (Nov. 26-29 in Irving, TX in 2018)
- December 2, 2019 – Last day for teams to offer 2021 contracts to unsigned players on their 40-man rosters
December 6-10, 2020 – Winter Meetings in Dallas, Texas, at the Omni Dallas Hotel and Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas, held in conjunction with the Baseball Trade Show and PBEO Job Fair.
- December 10, 2020 – Rule 5 Draft
- January TBA – Rookie Career Development Program
- January 15, 2021, 9:00 AM EST – Start of the 2020 international signing period
The rosters and lists are up to date as of November 8th … 323 players in the org
11/05/2020 – Tampa Bay traded RHP Rodolfo Sanchez to Phillies
11/05/2020 – RHP Rodolfo Sanchez assigned to Williamsport
11/02/2020 – Phillies activated RHP Seranthony Dominguez from the 60-day IL
11/02/2020 – CF Mikie Mahtook elected free agency
11/02/2020 – C Jonathan Lucroy elected free agency
11/02/2020 – LF Nick Martini elected free agency
11/02/2020 – C Christian Bethancourt elected free agency
11/02/2020 – OF Grenny Cumana elected free agency
11/02/2020 – 3B Jose Gomez elected free agency
11/02/2020 – 3B Jose Antequera elected free agency
11/02/2020 – RHP Gustavo Armas elected free agency
11/02/2020 – RHP Alejandro Requena elected free agency
11/01/2020 – Phillies extend Qualifying Offer to JT Realmuto
10/30/2020 – RHP Heath Hembree elected free agency
10/30/2020 – 2B Phil Gosselin elected free agency
10/30/2020 – LHP Adam Morgan elected free agency
10/30/2020 – RHP Blake Parker elected free agency
10/30/2020 – Phillies activated RHP David Robertson from the 60-day IL
10/30/2020 – Phillies claimed RHP Johan Quezada off waivers from Miami Marlins
10/30/2020 – RHP David Phelps elected free agency
10/30/2020 – RHP David Robertson elected free agency
10/30/2020 – Hector Neris becomes eligible for salary arbitration
10/30/2020 – Phillies decline club option for David Robertson
10/30/2020 – Phillies decline club option for David Phelps
10/30/2020 – Phillies decline club option for Hector Heris
10/30/2020 – Phillies sent 2B Phil Gosselin outright to Lehigh Valley
10/30/2020 – Phillies sent RHP Heath Hembree outright to Lehigh Valley
10/30/2020 – Phillies sent RHP Blake Parker outright to Lehigh Valley
10/30/2020 – Phillies sent LHP Adam Morgan outright to Lehigh Valley
10/28/2020 – Phillies activated LHP Jose Alvarez from the 60-day IL
10/28/2020 – SS Didi Gregorius elected free agency
10/28/2020 – RF Jay Bruce elected free agency
10/28/2020 – C JT Realmuto elected free agency
10/28/2020 – LHP Jose Alvarez elected free agency
10/28/2020 – RHP Jake Arrieta elected free agency
10/28/2020 – RHP Brandon Workman elected free agency
10/28/2020 – RHP Tommy Hunter elected free agency