With the upcoming June 5th draft it is clear the Phillies need power pitching that miss some bats in the organization. With the seventh selection in the draft they are in a great position to get just what they need.
They have been plagued with pitching injuries. On Saturday morning in the area of the Carpenter Complex a whole host of injured pitcher were seen walking about. High draft picks from previous years like Adam Morgan and Shane Watson, international free agent signings like Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez and trade acquisitions like Ethan Martin have been rehabbing various injuries.
It’s hard to blame the pitching coaches. They just do have much to work with. Most of the recent drafted and free agent pitchers pitch to contact. The Phillies recent draft strategy and international signings regarding pitching have just not provided much in the way of power arms. The first pitcher they were able to sign out of the 2012 draft was Shane Martin. He was the 271st overall pick in the 9th round and is now struggling in Lakewood with a high ERA. He has struck out only 8 in 16.1 innings.
The next pitcher they drafted was the 301st overall pick in the 10th round, Jon Prosinski. His fastball sits in the high 80’s as a starter for the Clearwater Threshers and has struck out only 13 in 26.2 innings . Not going to find much future power pitching there.
Clearly the organization was set back by the Ben Wetzler fiasco in last year’s draft. He is a lefty starter out of Oregon State. The Phillies drafted him in the fifth round, 151st overall, but they were unable to sign him after they thought he was committed to signing. He was the first pitcher chosen after the team drafted five position players prior to the fifth round.
Yesterday, Baseball Betsy and I went to the Clearwater Threshers vs. Dunedin Blue Jays game in Dunedin. The two teams are polar opposites. The Threshers after yesterday’s loss are now 5-18 needless to say with the worst record in the Florida State League while the Blue Jays have the best record at 18-5.
The Threshers pitcher was big Miguel Nunez a tall 6’6″ 21 year old right-hander who was an international signing back in 2010. However, he is not a strike out swing and miss pitcher. His fast ball sat at 89-90 mph and he was hurt when he hung a 76 mph curveball that was laced for a triple. Last year at Lakewood he recorded only 80 strike outs in 130 innings going 10-8. So far this year with the Threshers he has struck out 16 in 21.1 innings going 1-2 for the struggling team.
The Phillies need to draft and sign pitchers who have the ability to average closer to a strike out an inning. That usually means power arms who can throw well over 90 mph. Reports are that six of the first seven overall draft picks will be pitchers. The Phillies need to be one of those teams who draft pitching. They hold the seventh overall pick.
“Pitching and velocity stand out” in the upcoming draft according to John Manuel of Baseball America. Read the Story here. His top 10 pitchers in the draft are Brady Aiken lhp, Tyler Kolek rhp, Carlon Roden lhp, Jeff Hoffman rhp, Tyler Beede rhp, Aaron Nola rep, Kyler Freeland lhp, Brandon Finnegan lhp, Touki Toussaint rhp and Erick Fedde rhp.
One of these names will likely be on the back of a Phillies uniform at the Carpenter Complex at some point after the June 5th Draft.