Every year the fine folks at the Reading Eagle do a Phillies farm system minor league prospect survey, taking votes from media around the organization. This is what the group come up with:
1. Trevor May, RHP Clearwater, 21
2. Sebastian Valle, C Clearwater, 21
3. Jesse Biddle, LHP Lakewood, 19
4. Freddy Galvis, SS Lehigh Valley, 21
5. Phillippe Aumont, RHP Lehigh Valley, 21
6. Brody Colvin, RHP Clearwater, 21
7. Justin DeFratus, RHP Lehigh Valley, 23
8. Julio Rodriguez, RHP Clearwater, 20
9. Michael Schwimer, RHP Philadelphia, 25
10. Jiwan James, OF Clearwater, 22
11. Jonathan Pettibone, RHP Clearwater, 21
12. Austin Hyatt, RHP Reading, 25
13. Aaron Altherr, OF Williamsport, 20
14. Joe Savery, LHP Lehigh Valley, 25
15. Harold Garcia, 2B Reading, 24
16. Dave Buchanan, RHP Clearwater, 22
17. Carlos Rivero, 3B Reading, 23
18. Cesar Hernandez, 2B Clearwater, 21
19. Lisalberto Bonilla, RHP Lakewood, 21
20. Zach Collier, OF Lakewood, 20
That’s a pretty good list (the number on the right is their age). A few notes:
- Jesse Biddle is the only one on the list who is in his teens. When Baseball America does their poll in a few months, it won’t be that way, but people were hesitant to vote on people they haven’t seen play yet, or are unproven at the lower levels, which makes sense.
- Everyone on the list except for Aumont, Savery and Rivero have played for the BlueClaws.
- No surprise at all Trevor May is number one. He’s had a tremendous season with Clearwater (3.45 ERA, .215 opponents BA and a whopping 197 Ks in just 143 innings pitched, wow).
- Sebastian Valle got off to a blazing start, hitting .357 to the all-star break, and though he’s only at .227 in the second half, a catcher that has power and is improving defensively is a major asset.
- Vance Worley, Mike Stutes, and Domonic Brown were not eligible for obvious reasons.
- Great run for Jonathan Pettibone this year with a 3.00 ERA to move up.
- Good to see people taking notice of BlueClaws RHP Lisalberto Bonilla, who has been excellent (and is slated to pitch game one of the double-header tomorrow.
Nice article on Trevor May in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer:
“I believe this year as opposed to last year I made a lot of improvement mechanical-wise in being able to repeat things and also staying on a solid routine,” May said. “You have to find a work ethic that works for you. I also felt like this year I was able to make strides in dealing with adversity.
“I was really able to settle down when I got in trouble. I think you can see that by the fact that I have pitched more innings in 25 starts this year than I did in 27 last year.”
As much as he hated being demoted to Lakewood a year ago, May learned a lot from his second stint near the Jersey Shore.
“It was kind of a wake-up call,” May said. “I learned that I needed to throw more strikes and I needed to stay in the bottom half of the strike zone. You can get by with some things in the lower levels that you can’t get by with the higher you go.”
And another great one by Matt Gelb in the Inquirer on Vance Worley:
Six years ago – before Vance was Vanimal, before he wrote angry messages to himself inside his hat, before he transformed from middling non-prospect to one of the best rookie starters in Phillies history – he was an unassuming freshman with a buzz cut. He asked Chris Aquino, then a junior catcher for Long Beach State University, if he would catch a bullpen session before the school year even started.
Aquino had never before been asked to do that. When they were done Worley said, “Thank you.” But Aquino was disturbed.
“Every time you got into your balance point and you separated,” he said to Worley, “you gave me this big smile right before you delivered the ball.”