e>9. Jesse Biddle, Phillies: Getting to pitch in your own backyard can be a blessing and a curse. Sure, you’re close to home, but the pressure of playing for your hometown team can be detrimental. Biddle, the Philly-area kid who was taken by his team in the first round in 2010, handled it with aplomb. Strong and durable, Biddle shook off a rough first month to pitch extremely well in full-season ball for the remainder of the year, finishing among the leaders in ERA and strikeouts. As with many young pitchers, there’s still work to be done with his command, but he has the chance to have three above-average to plus pitches when all is said and done. He’ll pitch all of the upcoming season at age 20 while making the move up to the Florida State League.
Biddle will be a guest at the Winter Tour stop in Lakewood on Wednesday of next week (January 25th). Details here.