When minor league spring training camp opens around the first of March next year we will be watching for many contests to see who will be Phillies of the Future.
One of the most interesting contests will be for centerfield. Right now it looks like it’s Mickey Moniak or Simon Muzziotti who someday will be patrolling the outfield at Citizens Bank Park.
Both of them have so many similarities in build, age, swing and tools. Moniak( SAL) played at two levels higher than did Muzziotti (GCL) in 2017. They each have finished two years of play in the Phillies system and they can control them for three more years before the Rule 5 draft eligibility sets in.
Also from Fall Instructs it looks like Adam Haseley in left and Jhailyn Ortiz in right are the morning line favorites for the outfield corners in the future.
Moniak and Muzziotti are so close in ability with similar skill sets that it is hard to project who has the advantage in center.
Moniak is expected to open the 2018 season with a repeat with the Lakewood BlueClaws but quickly moving to up to the Clearwater Threshers by the Florida State League All Star break in mid-June. Look for Muzziotti to open in extended spring training and moving up quickly to Lakewood when Moniak moves up to Clearwater.
I like Muzziotti better but not by much after watching both of them play this season. One scout told MLB.com that he compares to a Jacoby Ellsbury.
Even in the Instructs games videos above they each looked so similar at the bat.
It seems to me the Phillies will have room for only one of them on their major league roster in the future when that day comes. So let the battle continue in the 2018 minor league spring training camp. It will be interesting to see which one eventually wins the Phillies centerfielder job three or so years down the road.