Gold Coast Cadillac Manager’s Report

April 3rd, 2014

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On the eve of the 2014 season, we sat down with BlueClaws manager Greg Legg for our first Gold Coast Cadillac Manager’s Report of the year.

You can listen to the full interview by clicking here, and we have some snippets below.

  • On managing – It’s a new challenge for me, one I haven’t had since 2007. I’m looking to learn from what I did in the past. Let the kids play a little bit more. I’m actually hoping to start the year with 25 and end the year with 25 different guys.
  • On JP Crawford – He’s had a great spring. He played with our group for maybe the last 10 days. He’s playing real well right now. I think he’s in the perfect spot to start the year and hopefully he plays his way out of here.
  • On Carlos Tocci – It looked like his first step is better, out of the box and on the bases. We know he’s going to play a great centerfield.
  • On Zach Green – His presence is off the charts. He’s a leader by example and by his talking. He’s the ultimate professional.
  • On Andrew Pullin – He’s still earning a new position and making a lot of strides. He’s a good fastball hitter and should feast on those.
  • On Dylan Cozens – He’s got all kinds of ability and his skills are really awesome. He can leave the yard. He can throw, run, steal a base, play center if he had to. If he lets it happen, he should have a big year.

There’s more in there and you can listen to the whole thing here.

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2014 Opening Day Roster

March 30th, 2014

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One of the more exciting days of the year…

Full roster release is below.

LAKEWOOD, NJ – The BlueClaws and their parent club, the Phillies, have unveiled the BlueClaws Opening Day roster that will start Lakewood’s 14th season on April 3rd in Savannah.

Click here for a pdf version of the Opening Day roster.

The team, broken down with 12 position players and 13 pitchers, includes 2013 Phillies 1st round pick (16th overall) SS JP Crawford and RHP Mark Leiter Jr., a Toms River North graduate. Both Crawford and Leiter spent the last two weeks of 2013 with the BlueClaws.

The roster also includes five players ranked among the Phillies Top 31 prospects per Baseball America: Crawford (3), OF Carlos Tocci (5), 3B Zach Green (15), OF Dylan Cozens (22), and OFLarry Greene, Jr. (31).

Further, five players were selected in the top five rounds of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft: Crawford (1st round, 16th overall in 2013), Larry Greene, Jr. (supplemental 1st round, 39th overall in 2011), Cozens (2nd round in 2012), Zach Green (3rd round in 2012), and 2B Andrew Pullin (5th round in 2012).

2014 Opening Day Roster By Position
Catchers: Willians AstudilloGabriel LinoJose Mayorga.
Infielders: JP CrawfordZach GreenWilmer ObertoAndrew PullinRobinson Torres
Outfielders: Dylan CozensGreene Jr., Samuel HicianoCarlos Tocci
Pitchers: Alejandro ArteagaTyler BuckleyRanfi CasimiroCody ForsytheUlises Joaquin,Mark Leiter, Jr.Shane MartinManaure MartinezJulio ReyesYacksel RiosKeivi Rojas,Jesen TherrienTyler Viza

Astudillo hit .318 with the GCL Phillies in 2012 before missing last year with an injury. Lino returns to Lakewood after spending parts of the last two years with the BlueClaws. He was acquired in a trade with the Orioles in 2012.

Crawford led the Gulf Coast League with a .345 batting average before an August 17th promotion to Lakewood last year. Green joins the BlueClaws from Williampsort where he led the NY-Penn League with 13 home runs. Oberto comes to Lakewood from the GCL Phillies, where he tied for the league in home runs (6) and led the league in RBIs (45).

Cozens, a former 2nd round pick, hit nine home runs and drove in 35 runs for Williamsport last year. Hiciano hit seven home runs with Williamsport last year and added 14 RBIs in 17 August games. Tocci returns to Lakewood where he played last year as the youngest player in franchise history (he opened the season at age 17 and turned 18 on August 23rd). He again opens this year as the youngest player on the team.

Among the pitchers, Martin was a 9th round pick last year from Southwestern Oklahoma State University and went 5-4 with a 3.31 ERA for Williamsport. Leiter, Jr., a Toms River North product, threw 16 shutout innings for the BlueClaws last year and is the second Shore Conference alum ever to play for the BlueClaws. Buckley had four saves and a 2.22 ERA with Williamsport and was named a mid-season NY-Penn League All-Star.

Greg Legg, who has been the BlueClaws hitting coach since 2008, returns to the manager’s office he first held during Lakewood’s inaugural season in 2001. He is joined on the staff by pitching coach Les Lancaster and coach Lino Connell. Both were on the BlueClaws staff in 2012 and with Williamsport last year.

Takayuki Sakurai joins the BlueClaws from Williamsport and is the team’s Athletic Trainer while Jeremy Kneebusch returns to Lakewood and will again serve as the Strength & Conditioning Coach.

The BlueClaws open the 2014 season in Savannah, GA on April 3rd. After four games against the SandGnats, they will play three games in Greensboro against the Grasshoppers before coming home. Opening Day at FirstEnergy Park is Thursday, April 10th.

Opening Weekend games (April 11th, 12th, and 13th) are part of Asbury Park Press Dollar Weekend and tickets to those three games are available for just $1.

Tickets to all 2014 BlueClaws home games are currently on sale by calling 732-901-7000 option 2 or online by clicking here.

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Minor League Spring Training Report: March 20th

March 21st, 2014

We did not have a report from Tuesday as the teams played intrasquad scrimmages, but they were all back out on the field yesterday against the Yankees and some familiar faces had big days. More on that later. Let’s start at the Triple-A level.

Lehigh Valley (4-1 win vs Yankees)

  • Barry Enright gave up a run on five hits over five innings and was followed by Austin Wright who threw two scoreless innings. Jeremy Horst and Cesar Jimenez each threw a scoreless inning as well.
  • Tyson Gillies went 2-2 with a double. Jim Murphy and Cody Overbeck each homered for the ‘Pigs.

Reading (5-2 win vs Yankees)

  • Hoby Milner allowed a run on four hits over five innings and continues to have a very good spring.
  • Lino Martinez threw two scoreless innings of relief.
  • Albert Cartwright, Justin Parr, and Carlos Alonso all had two hits with Parr and Alonso each picking up two doubles.

Clearwater (8-7 win vs Yankees)

  • Kyler Burke and Jordan Guth each gave up three runs in three innings.
  • The story of the day was the offense. JP Crawford went 4-4 with a double, walk, and three RBIs. Samuel Hiciano homered, and Brian Pointer was 3-4 with a double and two triples.

Lakewood (2-1 loss vs Yankees)

  • Tyler Viza gave up two hits and a run over four innings of work.
  • It was a quiet offensive day, with the lone run coming on a solo HR by 1B Wilmer Oberto, who played with the Gulf Coast Phillies last year.
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Spring Training Game Recap – March 18th

March 19th, 2014

We had the weekend round-up in yesterday’s post. Here is the round-up for Tuesday’s games.

Lehigh Valley (2-0 win at Pirates)

  • Greg Smith threw four scoreless innings and was followed by Tyler Knigge who added two shutout frames.
  • Jay Johnson, Mike Nesseth, and Justin Friend all had scoreless innings as well.
  • Offensively, Tyler Henson drove in two runs and went 2-2, while Cody Overbeck was 2-4 and Bob Stumpo was 2-2.
  • Tyson Gillies went 1-1 with three walks.

Reading (7-2 loss at Pirates)

  • Percy Garner started and allowed four runs in three innings. Nick Hernandez gave up two runs in 2.2 innings. 2013 BlueClaw Kevin Walter was here and gave up one unearned run in an inning.
  • Justin Parr and Brock Stassi drove in the runs while Jim Negrych, Harold Martinez, Josh Ludy, Logan Moore, Parr, and Edgar Duran each had a hit.

Clearwater (7-5 win vs Pirates)

  • Ethan Stewart threw four scoreless innings as the starter, but all the relievers gave up runs (Delvy Francisco – 2 in 2.1 IP, Chris Nichols – 2 in 1.2 IP, and Zach Cooper – 1 in 1 IP).
  • JP Crawford slid up to this group for the first time this spring and went 1-3.
  • Zach Green contined his good spring and went 2-2 with a double and a walk. Casey Serna had two hits as well, while Chris Serritella homered.

Lakewood (3-2 win vs Pirates)

  • Ranfi Casimiro started and gave up a run over 3.2 innings and was followed by Alejandro Arteaga, who allowed a run over 4.1 innings. Both played primarily with the GCL Phillies last year.
  • C Deivy Grullon went 2-3 with a pair of doubles to lead the offense.
  • Jiandido Tromp, Andrew Pullin, Jan Hernandez, Logan Pierce, Cord Sandberg, Robinson Torres, and Gustavo Martinez all had hits as well.

The plan is to do a rundown of some likely 2014 BlueClaws broken down into hitters and pitchers over the next few days.

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Minor League Spring Training: Weekly Recap

March 18th, 2014

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Let’s try to catch up on some of the Spring Training results from minor league camp over the last few days.

We’ll back up a couple of days to Friday (note – there were no reports from Thursday, March 13th as that was an intrasquad day, and there were no games on Monday, March 17th because of rain).

Friday, March 14th

Lehigh Valley (4-0 loss at Blue Jays)

  • Severino Gonzalez threw three shutout innings, allowing just one hit and striking out two, needing 34 pitches. He seems to have picked up where he left off last year.
  • Austin Wright followed and allowed three runs in two innings.
  • Offensively, the ‘Pigs had just three hits, two by RF Kelly Dugan, just down from big league camp.

Reading (8-1 loss at Blue Jays)

  • Nick Hanson, with the BlueClaws for much of last year, allowed five runs on six hits over three innings, while Lino Martinez followed with two scoreless innings. Kevin Walter added two more innings, allowing one run on one hit.
  • Offensively, Brock Stassi and Justin Parr each went 2-3 while Edgar Duran drove in the only run.

Clearwater (3-2 win vs Blue Jays)

  • Jeb Stefan started and allowed one run on one hit over three innings while Jordan Guth gave up one run over two innings. Delvi Francisco and Keivi Rojas each threw two scoreless innings.
  • Dylan Cozens went 2-3 with two runs, two steals and an RBI. Art Charles and Hilton Richardson added RBIs as well. Anthony Phillips, Charles, Chad Carman, Richardson, and Logan Pierce each had hits.

Lakewood (7-5 loss vs Blue Jays)

  • Mitch Gueller started and gave up two runs on three hits in two innings of work. Shane Martin allowed three runs in three innings after Gueller.
  • Offensively, six players each had one hit: Andrew Pullin, Larry Greene, Wilmer Oberto, Jan Hernandez, Jonathan Knight, and Jesus Posso. Oberto drove in two runs.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Minor League Spring Training Games – March 11th

March 12th, 2014

Tuesday marked the first day of 2014 Minor League Spring Training games and we have a recap for you here.

Please note that at this early stage of the process (rosters won’t be finalized until around March 29th and so many players are still in big league camp), don’t read too much into what team a player played with.

Lehigh Valley (5-1 win vs Blue Jays)

  • Barry Enright threw three scoreless innings with two strikeouts.
  • Colby Shreve gave up the only run, though it was unearned.
  • SS Brian Bixler had two hits (including a double), a run scored, and an RBI.
  • Matt Tolbert, Jim Murphy and Steve Susdorf drove in the other runs.
  • Sebastian Valle and Bob Stumpo split catching duties.

Reading (6-4 win vs Blue Jays)

  • Hoby Milner and Kevin Walter each threw two scoreless innings.
  • Brock Stassi had three hits, as did Justin Parr (who had a triple and two RBIs). Harold Martinez added two including a double.
  • Brian Pointer went 0-2 but also walked twoce and stole a base.

Clearwater (6-2 win at Blue Jays)

  • Miguel Nunez gave up a run over three innings. Lino Martinez threw two scoreless innings while Jeb Stefan and Jordan Guth each threw two innings (Stefan allowed one unearned run).
  • Gabriel Lino and Hilton Richardson each had two hits including a double while Richardson added two RBIs and a stolen base.
  • Sam Dove, drafted last year out of Georgia Tech, had a pair of stolen bases. Dylan Cozens, Art Charles, Sam Hiciano, Willians Astudillo, and Jiandido Tromp all had hits.

Lakewood (4-3 loss at Blue Jays)

  • Feliberto Sanchez started the game and threw two scoreless innings with three strikeouts and no walks.
  • Offensively, Andrew Pullin had three hits and a walk while Larry Greene Jr. went 2-5 with two RBIs. 3B Jan Hernandez added a pair of hits. JP Crawford went 1-4 with a walk and an RBI while Deivy Grullon, Herlis Rodriguez, Jonathan Knight, and Robinson Torres also had hits.

We’ll get as many recaps up as we can this spring.

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Spring Training Interview: Joe Jordan

March 5th, 2014

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At the Phillies Winter at Woodlake Country Club in January, we talked with Phillies Director of Player Development Joe Jordan about some potential 2014 BlueClaws players. It’s a perfect time, with Spring Training underway, to break out this interview and talk some baseball.

Joe, whats your excitement level heading into another baseball season?

Well, I’m excited for the third year, you know third year being a farm director. We’ve got a new staff situation here with Greg Legg taking over as manager, lef Lancaster coming back as pitching coach, Lino Connell coming back as the guy responsible for the hitters so I’m excited in that regard for those guys and again I like the players that we feel like are coming here at this point before we go to spring training.

Let me ask you first about JP Crawford.  The BlueClaws themselves go back to 2001 and he was the first high school draft pick to make it to Low A in the year he was drafted since the BlueClaws came into existence so obviously that says something about his development and how he was ready to play right from day one.

Well yeah no question, obviously we felt good about how he did in the Gulf Coast League and really we had an opportunity to keep his season going and just decided to get him up here and dip his toes in a little bit, a full season league, fully expect him to start here this coming year, hopefully he’ll come in and have a good spring training and we can do that. This will be a good level and good challenge for him to play this year.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Build-A-Bushel, 4th Annual

February 28th, 2014

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FanFest, the day that single-game tickets for the 2014 season go on sale for the first time, is coming up on March 8th (details). That means that fans have until then to lock in the best seats for the best games prior to then (through March 2nd) in a BlueClaws ticket package. So which games should you pick? How would you “build your Bushel?”

First off – take a look at the promotional schedule at BlueClaws.com/promotions. Then pick seven. Which seven? We asked several BlueClaws staffers how they would “build their Bushel,” if they already didn’t have season tickets, of course.

When you have built your bushel, you can then order it online here or call 732-901-7000 option 3.

Bonus: If you call in and order someone’s Bushel “off-the-rack,” meaning “The [insert name here] Bushel,” you can throw out a ceremonial first pitch at a 2014 game.

Each Bushel package, of course, comes with value-pricing ($70, or $10 per game for adults), and a choice of a great gift ($15 BlueClaws Gift Card or a Food Coupon Book) making it one of our best value ticket packages.

Let’s take a look at the efforts of some BlueClaws staff members to Build-a-Bushel.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Former BlueClaws In Clearwater

February 18th, 2014

Today marked the first day of full-squad workouts in Clearwater at Phillies Spring Training.

Here’s a rundown of the former BlueClaws in big league camp with the Phillies. (* notes a non-roster invitee)

Pitchers
Antonio Bastardo (2007)
Jesse Biddle (2011)*
Justin De Fratus (2009)
Jake Diekman (2009-10)
Ken Giles (2012)*
Cole Hamels (2003)
Mario Hollands (2011-12)*
Kyle Kendrick (2004-06)
Jonathan Pettibone (2010)
BJ Rosenberg (2009)
Michael Stutes (2008)

Catchers
Lou Marson (2006)*
Carlos Ruiz (2001)
Cameron Rupp (2011)
Sebastian Valle (2009-10)*

Infielders
Maikel Franco (2011-12)*
Freddy Galvis (2008)
Ryan Howard (2002)

Outfielders
Aaron Altherr (2010-11)
Domonic Brown (2008)
Leandro Castro (2009-10)*
Zach Collier (2009-10)
Kelly Dugan (2011)
Darin Ruf (2010)

In total, of the 58 players in Phillies camp this year, 24 are former BlueClaws.

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2013 A Year to Remember For Pettibone

January 30th, 2014

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(Editor’s Note – We’ll have some content from Wednesday’s Phillies Winter Banquet held at Woodlake Country Club that will be rolled out here over the next few days.)

Previously - Our talk with Ryne Sandberg. Our talk with Darin Ruf.

Jonathan Pettibone had made three starts with Triple-A Lehigh Valley when he got “the call” that he had been waiting for his whole life. He was going to the big leagues.

2013 was a special season for the former Phillies 3rd round pick, who made his big league debut on April 22nd, allowing two runs in 5.1 innings against Pittsburgh (he got a no-decision).

“It’s your dream since you were a little boy,” he recalled last week at the Phillies Winter Banquet. “I got to call my dad and my mom and they were able to come out and see me debut the next day.”

He said while he was excited for the call, “I still had to face the Pittsburgh Pirates the next night. You want to celebrate, but really you celebrate your goal and get ready.”

The transition, while obviously significant, was something that Pettibone was prepared for, with help.

“That was my first spring training in big league camp,” he said. And meeting Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels for the first time and watching them in their daily routines was a big help. Then, getting into the same routines as them, you can learn a lot about getting ready for each game you have to start.”

Pettibone made 18 starts with the Phillies and went 5-4 with a 4.04 ERA before a July 28th injury shelved him for the remainder of the season. That injury, a shoulder strain, has been a focus for Pettibone.

“Right now,” he said. “Staying healthy is the most important thing. That put a damper on last season so I think going into camp healthy and staying healthy for 162 games would be huge.”

Fully healthy now, he’s been throwing since December 1st and began on the mound late last week.

Drafted in 2008, Pettibone made major strides with the BlueClaws in 2010. After a 5.29 ERA in the first half, Pettibone had a 2.41 ERA in the second half and won series-clinchers in both rounds of the post-season as the BlueClaws won their second straight SAL title.

“That was my first full season and coming into it I guess I was a little naive, not fully knowing what to expect,” he said. “But around the midway point of the season I turned it around and it took off from there. That whole experience, the first full season, capping it off with the championship, it was great.”

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Ruf Remembers Lakewood As He Readies For Season

January 28th, 2014

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(Editor’s Note – We’ll have some content from Wednesday’s Phillies Winter Banquet held at Woodlake Country Club that will be rolled out here over the next few days.)

Previously - Our talk with Ryne Sandberg.

Darin Ruf remembers the last game he played as a BlueClaw. May 12th, 2010 at Greenville and he went 5-5 with a home run.

“I had the worst BP that day off Gorm Heimueller, the pitching coordinator at the time,” he said. “I couldn’t hit a ball square to save my life. Then I went 5-5. Mark Parent called me to his office after the game and told me I got promoted.”

Going 5-5 not only was a great way to finish his time with the BlueClaws, but it also moved his average up 30 points to .330. He finished with four home runs and 17 RBIs in 32 games. Not a bad month for a player drafted in the 20th round the year before from Creighton.

Jonathan Singleton came up the next day and homered in his first at bat and the BlueClaws would go on to win their second straight championship while Ruf spent the rest of 2010 and all of 2011 with Clearwater.

Ruf turned enough heads that he earned a chance to play in the prestigious Arizona Fall League in 2011, and was on a team that included, among others, Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, Will Middlebrooks, and Jean Segura.

“We were on one of the worst teams in the league too. You scratch your head and wonder why we didn’t win every game,” he joked. “It was a great learning experience being around some of the guys and to pick up things from seeing how they work. I’m never going to be as athletic as them so I have to pick up some little things to do well.”

He made the next step in 2012, moving to Double-A Reading. After hitting an impressive 18 home runs through July, he more than doubled-down in August, hitting 20 and finishing with 38, most in the minors that year.

“It was incredible,” he said. “It’s every baseball player’s dream to stay locked in as long as I was. To be able to do that at peak performance, and capture that, it was incredible.”

After the Reading season ended, he was promoted to Philadelphia, where he made history on September 25th (at least to us). In hitting his first big league home run in the same game where both Carlos Ruiz and Domonic Brown went deep, it was the first time three BlueClaws alumni homered in the same big league game.

He ended up playing in 12 games for the Phillies that year, going 12-33 with 3 home runs.

“It’s a different situation seeing guys like Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley, guys you grew up watching,” he said. “I remember when they came over talking to us at minor league camp. But personality wise, they take you in as part of the family. Having that core group of guys that know how to win and guys you can learn from is so important.”

Now, after a year split between Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia, he’s ready for spring training and a fight for at bats. Ruf went to Clearwater on January 12th to get ready (before a quick venture north for a week on the banquet circuit) for what he hopes is his first complete season in the big leagues.

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Sandberg Ready For First Spring Training as Big League Manager

January 23rd, 2014

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(Editor’s Note – We’ll have some content from Wednesday’s Phillies Winter Banquet held at Woodlake Country Club that will be rolled out here over the next few days. We’ll start with our chat with Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg.)

Ryne Sandberg was playing winter ball in Venezuela when he found out he was leaving the Phillies. He had been traded to the Cubs with Larry Bowa in exchange for Ivan DeJesus following the 1981 season.

“At the time I was bit surprised because Larry Bowa was a shortstop and I was a shortstop at the time,” he said at the annual Phillies Winter Banquet at Woodlake Country Club. “But I was going to a place where I was going to get to play a lot at 22. I went to spring training and started my major league career.”

It’s all come full circle for Sandberg in the last 23 years. His boss now of course is Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. His manager in winter ball when he found out he was traded? Ruben Amaro, Sr.

Sandberg, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2005 after a stellar 17-year career, will lead the Phillies at spring training for the first time starting next month. It’s the first time he’ll be a big league manager at spring training (after serving as interim manager for the Phillies over the last six weeks of last season), but it’s something he’s prepared for since his retirement.

“The smartest thing I did was go to spring training with the Cubs to serve as a guest instructor, which I did for nine years,” he said. In 2007, he started out as manager for the Cubs Midwest League affiliate in Peoria and was with the Cubs for four years before joining the Phillies again with Lehigh Valley in 2011.

“I was able to learn my style of managing while actually managing games,” he noted. “Then last year at the big league level as the third base coach and as the interim manager I was able to give the guys a feel of what I’m all about. I think being with these guys will go a long way entering the season.”

He’ll also make a point to make the younger players on the team feel as comfortable with the big league environment as he can.

“Larry Bowa [who will serve as Sandberg’s bench coach] helped me in that route both on the field and off the field,” Sandberg said. “We’d go to lunch and he made me feel I belonged. ‘I’m talking to Larry Bowa about who’s pitching today.’ Then once you’re comfortable, your natural tools will take over.”

He had to leave the Phillies to get his shot as a big league player, but now he’s come back to the Phillies to get his shot at managing, and Ryne Sandberg could not be more excited.

—-

One other thing Sandberg talked about that we wanted to mention here was the different chances players have to break into the game now compared to back then. Sandberg:

Triple-A is now different. It’s more 6 year free agents and a handful of prospects. Now, if you have a prospect at Double-A, he can make the jump straight to the big leagues. Then, you had to graduate Triple-A to get to the big leagues. Back then, you had to have a good Triple-A season and go to spring training and maybe break in. I think the movement of players now allows the players to go from Double-A to the big leagues but back then you had guys that played together for 10 years.

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Five Former BlueClaws Invited to Spring Training

January 9th, 2014

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From the Phillies release…

The Phillies have invited five additional players to major league spring training as non-roster invitees, the club announced today.

  • Jesse Biddle, LHP – In 27 starts with double-A Reading last season, Biddle went 5-14 with a 3.64 ERA and 154 strikeouts in 138.1 innings.  Despite battling whooping cough for the majority of the 2013 season, the Philadelphia native finished tied for first in the Eastern League in starts (27), tied for second in complete games (2), third in strikeouts and ninth in ERA.  He was also selected as an Eastern League midseason All-Star and earned the win for the U.S. Team in the MLB Futures Game at Citi Field in July.  On April 22 at Harrisburg, the 22-year-old took a perfect game into the 7thinning and struck out a career-high 16 batters.  After the season, he was named the second-best prospect in the Philliesminor league system by Baseball America.  Biddle was originally selected by the Phillies in the first round (27th overall) of the June 2010 draft from Germantown Friends School (Pa.).
  • Maikel Franco, 3B – The 2013 Paul Owens Award winner as the best player in the Phillies minor league system, Franco batted a combined .320 with 31 home runs and 103 RBI in 134 games between single-A Clearwater and double-A Reading last season.  He led all of Minor League Baseball with 308 total bases last year while finishing tied for second in extra-base hits (70), fourth in hits (173), tied for seventh in home runs and tied for eighth in RBI.   In 2013, the 21-year-old infielder was selected to the World roster for the MLB Futures Game, as well as the Florida State League midseason All-Star team, and was named Phillies Minor League Player of the Month for June and Player of the Week twice.  Following the season, he was named the top prospect in the Phillies minor league system by Baseball America.  In 388 career minor league games, Franco has batted .281 with 98 doubles, 50 home runs and 260 RBI.  He was originally signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent out of Azua, Dominican Republic, in January of 2010.
  • Ken Giles, RHP – Limited to just 24 games due to injury last season, Giles, 23, went 2-2 with six saves and a 6.31 ERA with single-A Clearwater.  The Albuquerque, N.M., native also pitched for Peoria in the Arizona Fall League, where he was selected as an AFL All-Star after holding opponents scoreless in nine of his 10 relief appearances and striking out 16 in 10.1 innings.  Armed with a fastball which touches 100 mph, Giles has compiled 152 strikeouts in 112.1 career innings (12.18 SO/9.0 IP) over three minor league seasons between the Gulf Coast League Phillies, Lakewood BlueClaws and Clearwater.  Giles was originally selected by the Phillies in the seventh round of the June 2011 draft out of Yavapai College in Arizona.
  • Mario Hollands, LHP – In 2013, Hollands went 7-3 with a 2.86 ERA in 27 games (20 starts) between single-A Clearwater and double-A Reading.  He struck out 114 batters while walking just 32 in 132.0 innings.  The 25-year-old was named Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Month in June after going 2-1 with a 1.00 ERA in four starts.  In four minor league seasons with the Phillies organization, Hollands has compiled a 24-22 record and 3.93 ERA in 96 games (67 starts).  The Oakland, Calif., native was originally selected by the Phillies in the 10th round of the June 2010 draft out of UC Santa Barbara.
  • Sebastian Valle, C – Valle began 2013 playing for Team Mexico in the World Baseball Classic before spending the regular season with double-A Reading, where he hit .203 with 15 doubles, 12 home runs and 41 RBI in 98 games.  Following the season, he also appeared in 46 games with Caneros de los Mochis in the Mexican Winter League where he batted .304 with 11 extra-base hits and 15 RBI.  In parts of seven seasons in the Phillies minor league system, the 23-year-old has a .258 career average with 132 doubles, 61 home runs and 311 RBI in 608 games.  He was originally signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent in October of 2006.

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Biddle, a 2010 first-round pick of the Phillies, was with the BlueClaws in 2011 and an on the SAL post-season All-Star team. Franco was with the BlueClaws for a few weeks in 2011 and all of 2012. Giles was with Lakewood for most of 2012. Hollands was the Opening Day starter in 2011 and here for part of 2012. Valle was here for half of 2009 and all of the 2010. He hit the game-winning home run in the SAL Championship Series clincher against Greenville in 2010.

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Phillies Minor League Coaching Staffs

January 9th, 2014

The full list of assignments is posted below:

phillies coaching staffs

As you can see, Mickey Morandini, who managed the BlueClaws each of the last two years, is now a coach with Lehigh Valley. Chris Truby, who managed the BlueClaws in 2011, is now the Phillies minor league infield coordinator. That role had been held by Doug Mansolino, who is now the minor league field coordinator. Mike Compton, who was the field coordinator, is now a senior advisor of player development.

 Williamsport coach Shawn Williams is the son of Jimy Williams.

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