Last month one of the minor league experts Keith Law who blogs about minor league baseball for ESPN rated the Phillies Farm system 27th out of the 30 major league teams farm systems. If you actually watch the Phillies minor league games its hard to believe that the Phillies system has been ranked so low. On Monday afternoon Baseball Betsy and I had the opportunity to watch the AAA and AA Phillies take on Pirates at the Carpenter Complex. Yes, Cliff Lee, Jimmy Rollins, and Erik Kratz played for the AAA team but the young talent on Schmidt and Ashburn Fields is what really caught my attention. Even at the higher levels of the Phillies minor league system the young talent has been impressive this spring.
I like to position myself where I can see both the pitching and hitting at the same time of the AAA and AA games. It make it easy to compare the talent within the system against one another. At one point both AAA third baseman Cody Asche and AA’s Roman Quinn who was DHing were up to bat at the same time. It’s easy to picture them some day playing together on the same left side of the diamond at Citizens Bank Park. Asche has such a nice easy left-handed swing. In Monday’s game he stroked two line drive singles, one up the middle and one to right field. He made it look so easy at the plate that to me it is easy to project him as a .300 hitter at the major league level some day. I saw Quinn play for the AA team at short on Sunday against the Blue Jays. In one at bat he hit a hard grounder down the first base line which he beat out for a single. He then stole second and when the ball went into center field on the throw from the catcher he made it easily to third. Out of a ground ball to first Quinn with his great skill set turned it into a runner at third with less than two outs. He would later score. With Asche at third and Quinn at short the Phillies have two of the top infield prospects at those positions in baseball.
I also watched two catchers play on Monday. When Kratz left the game Tommy Joseph took over behind the plate in the AAA game. He had two infield hits in the game as the DH up to that point Over in the AA game Cameron Rupp was catching and lined an rbi single to left. Rupp is having a phenomenal spring camp. After the first week of the minor league exhibition games, he has hit three home runs and on Sunday we saw him lined a rbi double to right center. It seems like he squares up and barrels every pitch he is seeing this spring. Between Joseph and Rupp the Phillies have two of the best young catchers in the minor leagues.
After watching pitchers Jesse Biddle and Adam Morgan dominate the Blue Jays on Sunday and Asche, Quinn, Rupp and Joseph play against them and the Pirates ovoer the last two days its not too hard to project the Phillies farm system as one of the better minor league systems in baseball.