We have been waiting all season for the 2016 overall first-round draft pick to breakout after a terrible start for the Threshers. Finally, it is happening especially in last night’s 7-4 win over the Tarpons from Tampa. In last night’s game Mickey Moniak had three hits and three RBIs in the same game for the first time all season. This is the second time he has had either three hits or three RBIs in one of his last nine games.
On the mound Felix Paulino finally picked up a three inning save, his first save of the season, with three strong innings in his role as a swing man on the pitching staff. In his last six games, one as an emergency four inning starter, he has pitched 16.1 innings allowing only three earned runs, walking two and striking out 21.
Moniak has been on fire. Over his last ten games he has gone 15 for 39 (.385 average) with 10 RBIs with his only home run of the season. Last night could be the penultimate moment in his career because the “Mick” has arrived! If he can continue his progress, with the need to sell tickets in Reading, the Phillies will no doubt move him quickly to AA where the Fightin Phils are currently 12 games under .500 having lost four straight.
Paulino was a starter for most of his now five-year Phillies minor league career. It seems the “experts” in the minor league department just do not know what to do with him. Does he have late inning stuff with his 95 mph fastball and excellent breaking pitch that he showed last night or is he a fifth starter in some team’s rotation?
So they appeared to have settled on Paulino as a swing man. To me that is a pitcher who does not have a clearly defined role. But any pitcher that can average better than a strikeout an inning with a 10-1 strikeout to walk ratio can always pitch anywhere he wants on any staff.
Watch Paulino pitch the ninth inning of last night’s game HERE.
Two guys to keep an eye on over the next few week are Mickey Moniak and Felix Paulino!