Nick Fanti Continues To Impress in the Early Innings of his Recent Starts, “Down Under”

Nick Fanti (Photo courtesy of Sidney Blue Sox Facebook page)

Phillies minor league left hander, Nick Fanti, is attempting to get back on the prospect list after an injury filled 2018 season. He is finishing the year strong “down under” in the  Australian Baseball League. In his last two, five-inning starts, he has struck out 15 allowing only three runs on seven hits and one walk for the Sydney Blue Sox.

What is more interesting is in the first three innings in each of his last the two starts, he has combined for 14 strikeouts including nine in one start last week and five in his most recent start on Saturday. He has struck out the side in the second inning of both games. In the fourth and fifth inning of the two games, he has struck out only one.

Fanti is best know for throwing an 8.2 inning no-hitter and a nine inning no-hitter for Lakewood back in 2917. He spent most of the 2018 season on the disabled list with a back problems.

After his last two starts, Fanti appears to be back. It would seem though he might make a good late inning reliever either as a set-up man and or a closer because of his domination of the early innings in his last two starts.

The 2019 season will be an important one for Fanti. He turns 22-years-old on December 30th.  He will start his fifth season in the Phillies organization which means he will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft at the end of next season, if not put on the 40-man roster.

 

 

 

 

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No Phillies Minor Leaguers are Listed Among Baseball America and MiLB’s Top Rule 5 Potential Draft Picks

I would take a chance on several Phillies pitchers not protected in the Rule 5 Draft at the MLB Winter Meeting on Thursday. Former Phillies prospect, pitcher Sam McWilliams, has rocketed up the Baseball America list to No. 1 of likely picks.  But it is likely none of the current Phillies Rule 5 eligibles will be drafted if the MiLB and Baseball America’s experts are right. Read HERE HERE  HERE.

While we watch the experts on MLB-TV talk about million of dollars to be handed out to major league free agents, a team could find a bargain non-40 man roster player for a mere $100K.  If they do not keep the Rule 5 prospect on the opening day 25-man MLB roster, the team from whom they drafted the player can get him back for only $5oK.  Not a bad deal to take a look at eligible Rule 5 players in spring training.

The Phillies have several pitchers who might get at least a look off the Rule 5 draft board. Go to the Phillies players who have played in the off season leagues. Some of them will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft, having been stuck in the Phillies farm system for at least four years for college guys and five years for high school and international guys,  See HERE.

Tyler Viza (Photo Courtesy of the Reading Fightins)

Several names to consider. We like starter Tyler Viza.  He ended the Arizona Fall League with a five-inning shutout striking out nine.  He ended the season strong, pitching to a 1.98 ERA over his final ten games mostly with Reading.

Jan Hernandez had a good 2018 season hitting  .292 with 10 homers in the first half for Reading.  Currently, he is hitting .323 in Puerto Rico.

Catcher Deivi Grullon hit 21 homers for Reading.  But he went 0 for 16 in the Dominican Winter League before being shutdown. He is a late addition to the Baseball America Rule 5 potential Rule Five Draft picks.

A guy who appears to be not playing winter ball is Jose Pujols.  All he did was hit .301 with 18 home runs in the Florida State League read HERE and hit four more homers in August for Reading.  He was tied with 11 assists in the FSL.  Jose was voted FSL Player of the Year, read HERE.

Second baseman Daniel Brito showed flashes, hitting around .250 at both Lakewood and Clearwater. He finished up with the Threshers hitting .300 over his last ten games of the season. He was also the Rawlings minor league Gold Glove winner at second base in 2018.

Several Phillies relievers looked good in the Arizona Fall such as Luke Leftwich and Seth McGarry. Luis Carrasco can bring the heat along with a good breaking ball. He pitched well in the the Sally League playoffs where he pitched 4.2 shutout innings striking out five.

A top lefty reliever available is Tyler Gilbert who pitched to left handed batters at a 1.50 ERA and a .132 batting average with Lehigh Valley.

So don’t forget to check in on Thursday to see if any movement occurs in the Rule 5 draft.

 

 

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Nick Fanti Earns a Brilliant Win by Striking Out 9 of the First 10 Batters He Faced in the Australian Baseball League

Four Phillies prospects have been playing note worthy baseball in the Australian Baseball League.  Lefty Nick Fanti led the way with a brilliant five inning start for the Sydney Blue Sox, Saturday afternoon, when he struck out nine of the first 10 batters he faced.  Righty Kyle Glogoski allowed only two runs in his five inning start for Auckland.  Catcher Mitch Edward is hitting .353 in his last ten games and second baseman Curtis Meade has gone 4 for 10 in his last three games both for the Auckland Bite.

Nick Fanti gets strikeout with a high fast ball. (picture courtesy of ABL.tv)

Nick Fanti gets strikeout with breaking ball in the dirt. (picture courtesy of ABL.tv)

 

Fanti is coming back from an injury prone 2018 season but in his last start he put it all together getting his first win in four starts.  In the five inning start start, in addition to his nine strikeouts, he allowed only a run and three hits over a five inning, 71 pitch outing. He struck out the side in order in the first and second innings, Watch HERE.

Glogoski continues to pitch well in his four starts in the ABL. Only a two-out, two-run single marred his five inning start. He is third in the ABL with his 0.61 WHIP and fourth in ERA at 1.37. Kyle has walked only three and struck out 18 in 19.1 innings.

The switch-hitting Mitch Edwards continues to drive the baseball.  In the three games so far this weekend he is 5 for 11 plus a sacrifice fly RBI.  He is leading all ABL catchers in batting average and is tied for the lead among catchers with a .873 OPS.

Listen to an interesting Adelaide Bite podcast called “Shark Infested Waters” featuring Edwards, HERE. (Mitch comes in at 8:48)

Expect Fanti and Glogoski soon be shutdown for the season to get ready for Phillies minor league spring training.  Reports said that the Phillies wanted Glogoski to pitch no more than 25 innings in the ABL.  Fanti, Glogoski, Edwards and Mead will be definitely four players to check out at the Carpenter Complex in the March minor league spring training games.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Phillies 2018 Organizational All-Stars Announced By MiLB But We Have Our Own Selections

On Friday of last week MiLB.com released the Phillies 2018 organizational All-Stars by position. Read HERE. Some picks we agree with, others we do not and one, Zach Green, is no longer in the Phillies organization. According to Baseball American, Green was a minor league free agent who signed with the San Francisco Giants.

Of the 12 twelve players selected by MiLB, we agreed with them on seven including Darick Hall, 1B, Daniel Brito, 2B, Adam Haseley and Jose Pujols, OF, Austin Listi, utility, LHP David Parkinson and reliever, Addison Russ.

Darick Hall

Hall had a big season hitting with runners in scoring position with three different teams but he did not hit much with the bases empty. He hit .362 RISP/.205 bases empty with Clearwater, .304 RISP/.203 bases empty with Reading and .313 RISP/.219 bases empty in the AFL. Overall, he led the Phillies minor leaguers with 30 home runs and 99 RBIs in 146 games. Watch several of his Clearwater home runs HERE.

Brito had nearly the same slash line at both Lakewood (.250/.300/.348) and Clearwater (.252/.309/.340). He will play at baseball age 21 in 2019 so he has time to improve his offensive numbers to go along with his minor league gold glove defense. He recorded a .988 fielding percentage in 116 games, the highest mark among second basemen in Minor League Baseball according to MiLB. Watch HERE.

Adam Haseley

Haseley kept improving his batting average as the season went on. He started the season with Clearwater slashing .300/343/.405 and finished up with Reading slashing .316/.403/.478. He played all three outfield positions. Watch a Clearwater home run HERE.

Jose Pujols

Pujols had a season to remember slashing in the FSL at .301/.364/.523. He finished second in qualifying Florida State League batting average and OPS. He was tied for first in outfield assists in the league with 11 playing in right field. He played his final 26 games with Reading finishing up with a combined 22 home runs for the season. Watch a Clearwater home run HERE.

Austin Listi

Listi is the utility selection. He put on a great show for us the first half of the season with the Threshers hitting .344 but fell off with Reading hitting .281 and in the Arizona Fall League hitting .250. He played all the corner infield and outfield positions and DH’d.  In the AFL he played primarily in right field. Watch several of his home runs HERE.

David Parkinson

Parkinson had the fourth lowest ERA for a starter at 1.45 in minor league baseball since 2005.  He was a 12th round 2017 draft pick with average fastball velocity. The major league average fastball velocity for a left-hander last season was 91.6 ERA. Still, he averaged better than a strikeout an inning last season with his outstanding curveball command. Watch HERE.

Addison Russ

Russ was outstanding with similar splits in relief for both Lakewood, 13 for 13 in saves and Clearwater, 13 for 14 in saves. He was 9-2 with a 1.68 ERA overall in the regular season.. He averaged over a strikeout an inning. He recorded the win in the only Threshers playoff victory. Watch HERE.

The outstanding left handed reliever has to be Zach Warren. For Lakewood he was 15 of 16 in save opportunities striking out 100 in 56.2 innings. He had a was 3-2, won-loss record with a 1.91 ERA. He finished strong striking out 29 with 7 saves in only 12.1 innings over his last 10 games including two of the saves in the playoffs.

Spencer Howard and Rodolfo Duran Celebrate after Howard’s No-Hitter. (Photo courtesy of the Lakewood BlueClaws)

In the other selections where we disagree with MiLB. Rodolfo Duran is clearly the top catcher in the Phillies organization. He proved it in the six games of the SAL playoffs where he caught a nine inning, no-hitter; hit three home runs and threw out four baserunners in six attempts. He will turn only 21-years-old on February 16th. With the playoff games home runs included, he hit 21 homers on the season.

Alec Bohm

With Zach Green gone, the third baseman of the future is left to first round draft pick, Alec Bohm. When we watched Bohm in Fall Instructs he showed he can hit for power. He hit a homer that landed on top of the Tike Bar roof in left in the first Instructs game but he had trouble fielding a ground ball chopper at third in a later Instructs game. Watch his home run HERE.

Luis Garcia

The most impressive young player we saw at Fall Instructs was middle infielder Luis Garcia. He just turned 18-years-old on October 1st and plays like a seasoned veteran.  We saw him play both at second and short. All he did earlier was lead the Gulf Coast League in batting average hitting .368. with a .921 OPS. MiLB selected Daniel Brito at second and Nick Mason at shortstop as Phillies organization All-Stars. Wherever they put Garcia, he is the All-Star. Watch HERE.

Mickey Moniak

In the outfield, we are selecting centerfielder Mickey Moniak. MiLB has Dylan Cozens in the outfield but his time as a top prospect is passing.  He just strikes out way too much. Moniak, much like Jose Pujols, had a break out season with Clearwater.  In the second half of the season, he hit .286 with 17 doubles, 3 triples and 4 homers.  Remember, he does not turn 21-years-old until May. Look for a big season for Moniak likely starting out the 2019 season at Reading. Watch HERE and HERE.

Mauricio Llovera

Our favorite starting pitcher in 2018 was Clearwater’s right hander Mauricio Llovera. He did everything he could to get the Threshers into the post season. Over his last nine starts including a playoff start, he went 6-0 striking out 63 in 54.2 innings.  In two of those starts he struck out 21 in 13.2 innings. He has good off speed stuff and threw his fastball in the mid to high 90’s. He took a one-hit shutout into the bottom of the seventh in his playoff start before giving up a home run and left the game with the lead before the Threshers bullpen imploded. Watch his double digit strikeout games, HERE and HERE.  

Spring training will be interesting with some of these guys getting called over to the major league camp and play in Grapefruit League games and others later attending the minor league camp. In any event, the Phillies do have talent at the minor league level to help the big league team, even at some point in 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Phillies Prospects, Pitcher Kyle Glogoski and Catcher Mitchell Edwards, Continue To Standout in ABL Action

Only a few Phillies prospects are playing winter ball going into December.  In the past, the Caribbean Leagues were filled with them playing winter ball. Now, we do find a few of them playing in the Australian Baseball League playing this weekend as summer approaches down under.

On Saturday in Auckland, New Zealand and in Adelaide, Australia we did find Phillies prospects in action. Thanks to Youtube and Facebook Live we could watch their progress.

New Zealand is only 18 hours ahead of us here in Tampa Bay but we would not miss a Kyle Glogoski start. So, Friday evening at six o’clock we were watching his noon Saturday start in New Zealand against the Canberra Cavalry with a wind-driven rain in the air.

Kyle was protecting a 1-0 lead with two outs in the top of the fifth inning before he yielded a wind-aided homer to tie up the game. It was the first run he allowed in 14.2 innings of work in his three starts. He has been pitching no more than five innings and is on a 25- inning pitch limit imposed by the Phillies. It looks like he has only two more starts before he will be shutdown for the 2018 season.

Kyle Glogoski (Photo courtesy of Tuatara Twitter)

In his three starts, Glogoski has allowed only three hits for a .063 opponents batting average. He leads the ABL in WHIP at 0.61. He has struck out 16 and walked three.  Watch his four strikeouts from Saturday’s game, HERE.

Mitch Edwards home run for Adelaide vs Perth (Photo Courtesy of Adelaide Bite Facebook Page.)

Another player who is showing why he is a Phillies major league prospect is catcher Mitch Edwards. He hit his second homer of the season in Saturday’s game for the Adelaide Heat. It was a three-run blast, batting right-handed. He now has hit a homer from both sides of the plate in his eleven games so far in the ABL. He is hitting .306 with a .859 OPS overall and threw out a runner trying to steal second base in the game. Watch his home run, HERE.

Both Glogoski and Edwards are playing like major league prospects as 19-years-olds.   They are two guys to watch in the Phillies minor league camp this spring because they have a chance to be the first players from New Zealand and Australia to have an impact at the Phillies major league level. Right now, they figure to compete for roster spots with either Williamsport or Lakewood in 2019, after spending last season in the Gulf Coast League.

 

 

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Taking A Look At Phillies Top Pitching Prospects Adonis Medina and Mauricio Llovera

With moves made by the other teams in the N.L East, the Phillies are quickly falling behind. MLB’s Ken Rosenthal outlines the long list of moves the Phillies need to make to be competitive in the division in 2019. Watch HERE.

The Phillies might be forced to move some of their young minor league talent to acquire the players they need in the suddenly competitive division. They do have minor league pitching depth to get the talent they need at the major league level if they chose to go the trade route.

Several names have been mentioned in trade discussions so far. One of them, Sixto Sanchez, has not pitched since June 3 for the Clearwater Threshers because of assorted injuries. We watched him pitch in a brief outing  in Fall Instructs but it was decided he was not ready to pitch in the Arizona Fall League.

The Phillies do have two other top prospects who finished strong in August for Clearwater,  Adonis Medina and Mauricio Llovera. We were fortunate to watch Sanchez pitch a seven inning, four-hit, one-run, 12 strikeout, no decision back on August 15th. The Threshers did go on and win the game 2-1. On August 26th, we watched Lovera pitched a seven-inning complete game allowing only four hits and two runs. He struck out 11 to get a 3-2 win in that game.

Adonis Medina

In August, Medina went 1-1 with a 2.57 ERA in 28 innings striking out 30 and Llovera went 4-0 with a 1.74 ERA striking out 38 in 31 innings. They paved the way for the Threshers to win the second half to make the FSL playoffs.

Mauricio Llovera

Let’s take a look at the two big strikeout games that Medina (watch HERE) and Llovera, (watch HERE) pitched in August. These two games tells us a lot why they are two of the top young pitching prospects in the Phillies system. They clearly have major league stuff that other teams would be interested in. The Hot Stove League will heat up in December especially with the winter meetings starting December 9th to the 13th in Las Vegas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in 2018, November | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Kiwi Kyle Glogoski Shows Why He Is a Top Phillies Pitching Prospect

One of the top Phillies pitching prospects, Kiwi Kyle Glogoski, sits high atop the Australian Baseball League’s Pitching Leaders Board after the first two rounds of play. In his two starts, he has pitched ten innings of one-hit, no-run baseball walking two and striking out 12 for his home town Auckland Tuatara from New Zealand. Read HERE.

Kyle Glogoski (Photo courtesy of Tuatara Twitter

Kyle Glogoski (Photo courtesy of Auckland Tuatara Facebook Page.)

 

Glogoski, who will turn 20-years-old January 6th, leads the league’s pitchers with a 0.00 ERA and 0.40 WHIP.  In two starts he has pitched a five-inning, no-hitter and followed that up with a five-inning, one-hitter on Sunday.  So far he has allowed only three baserunners, on two walks in his first start and a double in Sunday’s game. Read HERE.

He was signed as an international free agent on January 8th of this year. Kyle has made dramatic improvement since signing with the Phillies. Last season pitching in the ABL, prior to signing with the Phillies, in five appearances he gave up 8 earned runs on 12 hits in 12.1 inning. He went on to pitch in the Gulf Coast League this summer where he was one of the top pitchers with a 4-0 record and 2.31 ERA in 39 innings.

In yesterday’s win against the Brisbane Bandits, Glogoski struck out six including two on his change-up in the second inning. Watch those two HERE. They said during the telecast that he hit 94 mph with his fastball in his first start in Perth Australia. He threw only 68 pitches, 44 for strikes in Sunday’s game.

Glogoski reminds me of a right-handed version Cole Hamels with his fast-ball, change-up repertoire to left-handed batters. Brisbane stacked the lineup with 7 left-handed batters, to little avail yesterday. Five of his six strikeouts came against left-handed batters. The only hard hit ball off of him was the double by a left-handed batter.

Glogoski is on a reported 25 inning pitch limit in the ABL. He looks certain to be a starting pitcher with the Lakewood Blue Claws in 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in 2018, November | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment