After watching the Arizona Diamondbacks send out pitchers with double digit earned run averages against the Phillies this week, I started to think about Phillies minor league starters and relievers I have seen pitch this season. If I were asked to be a General Manager, I could put together a competitive major league pitching staff right now just from the Phillies minor league system. Well maybe not right but some day soon! Here’s who I would pick. My five man rotation would be Tyler Greene, Austin Wright, Trevor May, Adam Morgan and Austin Hyatt. They might be a better starting five than some major league rotations if the Diamondbacks are any indication.
Tyler Greene was spectacular again last night in Reading’s 6-0 win over the Giants AA farmhands from Richmond. According to Mike Drago, the R-Phillies beat reporter in the Reading Eagle newspaper, Cloyd has an improved cutter which has been the key to his 4-0 record in four starts this season. Cloyd pitched six perfect innings in his opening day start as an emergency starter for Lehigh Valley. That game is available on MiLB-TV in its archives. Last night he went seven innings to key the Reading Phillies shutout win.
Lefty Austin Wright was dominating Monday night in Clearwater’s win over the Cards’ Brevard County farm team to go 3-0 in his first three starts. He struck out eight of the first ten batters he face in the game. He leads the Florida State League in strike outs per nine innings pitched. His two seam pitch has been a key to keep batters off balance to set up his four seam fastball and slider.
Trevor May is showing why several minor league observers have said he is the No. 1 prospect in the Phillies system. I watched him pitch for Reading against the Harrisburg Senators on MiLB -TV a few weeks ago. He showed a fastball at 92-93 MPH and has improved his curve and change up secondary pitches. May is 4-0 after tonight win and is averaging better than a strike out an inning. Tonight he pitched a six inning, seven strike out, one hitter leaving the game with a 1-0 lead. Tyson Brummett came on to pick up his first save to perserve the second shutout by Reading pitching in two nights.
Lefty Adam Morgan has impressed me with his 92-94 mph fast ball which sets up his off speed breaking pitches. Last night Morgan pitched six shutout innings against Brevard County and is tied for the lead in strikeouts in the Florida State League.
My fifth starter would be Austin Hyatt. Austin’s out pitch has always been his change up. He is 2-1 with a 2.53 earn run average with Lehigh Valley.
In my bullpen would be of course lefty Jake Diekman to go along with Michael Schwimer, now with the Phillies and B.J. Rosenberg from Lehigh Valley; Tyson Brummett from Reading; Tyler Knigge, Hector Neri, Lisalverto Bonilla and Jordan Whatcott from Clearwater. Those four relievers for the Threshers have given up just two earned runs in 40 innings of relief pitching so far this season. The Phillies Front Office seems to be stressing power arms out of the pen. You better be able to throw in the low 90’s or you may find your self released.
I see that Schwimer has already been called up to take Michael Stutes spot who has gone on the 15 day disabled list. Rosenberg has moved up to Lehigh Valley and Whatcott has moved to Reading.
Without a doubt the Phillies system is very deep in pitching. Now if they can just develop a few young long ball hitters who can hit with runners on base in close and late games they might be able to start scoring runs even against pitching staffs without pitchers with double digit earned run averages.