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Philadelphia Phillies' Top 10 Prospects Rankings, Spring Forecasts

Mike RosenbaumMLB Prospects Lead WriterDecember 14, 2016

Philadelphia Phillies' Top 10 Prospects Rankings, Spring Forecasts

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    Headed into the 2012 season, nobody expected the Phillies to be anything less than a playoff contender, let alone struggle mightily as they did.

    By the all-star break, the team’s postseason aspirations had faded, and a few weeks later they began clearing house by moving both Hunter Pence and Shane Victorino at the trade deadline.

    However, while their overall season was a disappointment, they did add a few nice pieces to their severely depleted farm system in Ethan Martin and Tommy Joseph. Furthermore, pitching prospects such as Jesse Biddle, Adam Morgan and Jonathan Pettibone all took steps forward in terms of individual development, while Maikel Franco and Roman Quinn established themselves as young, high-ceiling talent.

    As you will see, their top 10 has a much different look than it did a year ago.

10. Larry Greene, OF

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    Position: OF

    DOB: 2/10/1993 (Age: 19)

    Height/Weight: 6’0", 235

    Bats/Throws: L/R

    Drafted/Signed: Supplemental first round, 2011 (Berrien County HS, Ga.)

    ETA: 2016

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Left-handed hitter with plenty of raw, light-tower power; upper-cut swing will need to be leveled (to an extent) over the next couple years; holes in his swing will be exploited if he doesn’t continue to make adjustments; needs to employs a less pull-oriented approach and focus on more hard contact; struggles to catch up to above-average fastballs.

    An impressive athlete for his size who also starred on the gridiron as a prep; physical player who doesn’t require much future projection; has more speed than one would expect, but grades as slightly below-average; will have to avoid adding additional weight to 6’0" frame, which may prompt a move to first base; fringy arm strength also limits his defensive projection.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    Greene will head to minor-league camp where he will work on leveling his swing while improving his fringy defense in the outfield.

     

    2013 Outlook

    The 20-year-old will be forced to make a series of improvements over the upcoming season, but should eventually graduate to a full-season level once ready.

9. Jonathan Pettibone, RHP

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    Position: RHP

    DOB: 07/19/1990 (Age: 22)

    Height/Weight: 6’5”, 200

    Bats/Throws: R/R

    Drafted/Signed: Third round, 2008 (Esperanza HS, Calif.)

    ETA: 2013

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Tall lanky frame at 6’5”, 200 pounds; consistent mechanics; clean and repeatable; durable; works deep into starts; fastball isn’t overpowering in the low-90s; works on downhill plane; relies on above-average command; changeup serves as best secondary offering; sells it with deceptive arm speed; nice fading action; slider is average; lacks sharp break; doesn’t profile as a bat-misser; effective in relation to a well-located heater; little room for error given lack of plus pitch; profiles as a back-end starter.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    The right-hander will receive plenty of time on the mound this spring as the organization is eager to see how he fares against more advanced hitters.

     

    2013 Outlook

    Pettibone will likely return to Triple-A to open the year where he will continue to refine his command and arsenal in anticipation of promotion to majors at some point.

8. Shane Watson, RHP

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    Position: RHP

    DOB: 8/13/1993 (Age: 19)

    Height/Weight: 6’4”, 200

    Bats/Throws: R/R

    Drafted/Signed: First round, 2012 (Lakewood HS, Calif.)

    ETA: 2016

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Highly projectable 6’4”, 200-pound frame is built for innings; better athlete than his size suggests; tough competitor on the mound who attacks hitters and trusts his arsenal; overall command is average at the moment, but will seemingly improve as he works out a few kinks with his delivery and release point.

    Fastball sits 89-93 mph and he holds it deep into starts; has scraped 94-95 mph on occasional and could sit there as he develops; throws a slower curveball in the mid-70s, though it has a nice shape; still working on developing a consistent changeup, as he tends to overgrip the pitch and throw it too hard; regardless of velocity, it has makes of an above-average pitch with late fade.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    Not invited to major-league spring training, Watson will head to minor-league camp where he will continue to develop his arsenal and establish repeatable mechanics.

     

    2013 Outlook

     Even though he’ll likely head back to a complex level to open the year, there’s a chance the Phillies challenge Watson with a full season given his size and raw stuff.

7. Cody Asche, 3B

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    Position: 3B

    DOB: 6/30/1990 (Age: 22)

    Height/Weight: 6’1”, 180

    Bats/Throws: L/R

    Drafted/Signed: Fourth round, 2011 (Nebraska)

    ETA: 2014

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Asche turned in an impressive full-season debut in which he reached Double-A; advanced college hitter employs a patient approach and is adept to seeing the ball deep and using the whole field; possesses primarily gap power at the moment, but showed more home-run power upon reaching Double-A; power is fringy to profile as a big-league third baseman.

    Defensive tools and skill set play well at the hot corner; good glove and hands combined with an instinctual first step; range is suitable for the position though it’s only slightly above-average; possesses a strong and accurate arm that aids his projection at third base; enough present speed to see time in left field if necessary.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    After raking at two levels last season, Asche will receive an extended look at the hot corner this spring as the organization gauges whether he’s the future third baseman.

     

    2013 Outlook

    Due to his success at Double-A last season, Asche will likely open the year at Triple-A with a chance to hit his way into the lineup by September.

6. Tommy Joseph, C

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    Position: C

    DOB: 7/16/1991 (Age: 21)

    Height/Weight: 6’1”, 215

    Bats/Throws: R/R

    Drafted/Signed: Second round, 2009 by Giants (Horizon HS, Ariz.)

    ETA: 2014

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Acquired from the San Francisco Giants in exchange for Hunter Pence at the 2012 trade deadline; decent agility behind the plate but does a good job boxing the ball; receiving and game-calling skills were much improved this past season; plus arm behind the plate stifles running game (40-percent caught stealing rate in 2012); has continued to see time at first base in order to keep bat in the lineup.

    Right-handed hitter features plus raw power to all fields, though he doesn’t efficiently tap into it with frequency; power numbers in 2011 likely a result of hitter-friendly California League (High-A); too much swing-and-miss to his game and needs to improve bat-to-ball ability; not sold on his bat in general; hands can be slow and appears to cheat at times; too many late swings but should be able to shorten his bat path with more experience.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    As the most advanced catcher in the Phillies’ system, Joseph will use the spring to familiarize himself with the organization’s pitchers.

     

    2013 Outlook

    Depending on the perceived state of his bat and plate discipline, Joseph could open the year at Triple-A with the chance of reaching the majors by September.

5. Ethan Martin, LHP

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    Position: RHP

    DOB: 6/6/1989 (Age: 23)

    Height/Weight: 6’2”, 195

    Bats/Throws: R/R

    Drafted/Signed: First round, 2008 by Dodgers (Stephens County HS, Ga.)

    ETA: 2013

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Headlined the prospect package for Shane Victorino at the 2013 trade deadline; composed and balanced delivery with fluid arm action; release point is still inconsistent, which had led to command problems; impressive athlete who should continue to refine his mechanics.

    Fastball consistently registers in the mid-90s and visibly jumps on opposing hitters; curveball can get a bit slurvy at times, but flashes plus potential when thrown with consistency; changeup is a work-in-progress, but was better this past season; arsenal and athleticism give him No. 3 starter upside provided his command continues to improve.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    With his new organization, Martin should receive plenty of looks on the mound this spring as he edges closer to the major leagues.

     

    2013 Outlook

    With a strong spring, Martin could open the year at Triple-A with a legitimate chance to reach the majors by the end of the season.

4. Maikel Franco, 3B

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    Position: 3B

    DOB: 8/26/1992 (Age: 20)

    Height/Weight: 6’1”, 180

    Bats/Throws: R/R

    Drafted/Signed: Jan. 2010 (Dominican Republic)

    ETA: 2015

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Franco possesses wiry strength at 6’1”, 180 pounds, but should become a more physical player as he develops and fills out; right-handed hitter has easy, above-average raw power to all fields thanks to strong wrists and a leveraged swing; bat path can get long when he tries to gear it up; aggressive hitter needs to attack more pitches in the strike zone and work to improve his bat-to-ball ability; may possess a solid-average hit tool by the time he reaches the major leagues.

    I really like his defense profile at the hot corner; despite lacking speed and quickness, he’s an agile defender with average range in all directions; hands and actions seem natural at the position and should continue to improve; plus arm is his strongest defensive attribute; still a very raw prospect early indications suggest he’ll develop favorably.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    Participating in minor-league camp, Franco is still a raw prospect in need of both instruction and refinement.

     

    2013 Outlook

    After a torrid second half of the 2012 season, Franco stands to be challenged with a promotion to High-A in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League where he may endure his share of struggles. 

3. Adam Morgan, LHP

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    Position: LHP

    DOB: 2/27/1990 (Age: 22)

    Height/Weight: 6’1”, 195

    Bats/Throws: L/L

    Drafted/Signed: Third round, 2011 (Alabama)

    ETA: 2013

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Morgan has clean mechanics and an easy delivery that makes his 91-94 mph fastball deceptively jump on opposing hitters; commands the pitch well to both sides of the plate; doesn’t shy away from working inside against right-handed hitters; adept to adding and subtracting from fastball.

    Features two average secondary offerings in a slider and changeup; slider has a nice break and he spots it well; changeup is especially effective when he’s locating his heater; pitch has late fade and is thrown with arm speed comparable to fastball.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    The Phillies will give Morgan a long look on the mound this spring as he’s one of several mid-level arms capable of helping at the big league level in 2013.

     

    2013 Outlook

    After a strong showing at Double-A to finish the 2012 season, Morgan will likely return to the level with the chance to move quickly.

2. Roman Quinn, SS

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    Position: SS

    DOB: 5/14/1993 (Age: 19)

    Height/Weight: 5’10”, 170

    Bats/Throws: S/R

    Drafted/Signed: Second round, 2011 (Port St. Joe HS, Fla.)

    ETA: 2015

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Younger player who has advanced tools and baseball skills relative to his age; explosive plus speed gives him true top-of-the-order potential; switch-hitter is still learning intricacies from both sides; much better hitter from his natural right side, though he made impressive strides as a left-handed hitter in pro debut; present above-average bat speed and impressive hand-eye coordination suggest the development of an above-average hit tool; plate discipline is impressive given his lack of experience, but will need to improve his pitch recognition over time.

    Plus speed lends to his above-average range at shortstop; approaches the position with creativity and should be able to stick at the position; possesses quick feet and natural instincts which lends to his overall range; overall, he’s still very raw defensively but there’s a lot to like.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    Participating in minor-league camp, Quinn will continue to refine his approach and swing from both sides of the plate while fine-tuning his defense at shortstop.

     

    2013 Outlook

    The Phillies won’t rush Quinn’s development in 2013, though he’s still poised to spend most of the season at Low-A.

1. Jesse Biddle, LHP

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    Position: LHP

    DOB: 10/22/1991 (Age: 21)

    Height/Weight: 6’4”, 225

    Bats/Throws: L/L

    Drafted/Signed: First round, 2010 (Germantown Friends HS, Penn.)

    ETA: 2014

     

    2012 Stats

     

    Scouting Notes

    Projectable 6’4” frame with broad shoulders; balanced delivery; minimum effort; durable innings eater; throws on a downward plane; eliminated some of the cross-body delivery that hindered his command in 2011.

    Fastball sits 90-93 mph and he works it to both sides of the plate; vastly improved control/command compared to previous season; curveball features tight spin and late, downward bite; comfortable throwing it for a strike; spots it out of zone to induce whiffs; changeup improved steadily last season; gives him a chance to have at least three above-average offerings; secondary offerings in need of seasoning and refinement.

     

    Spring Training Forecast

    In his first spring training with the Phillies, Biddle should receive plenty of looks on the mound as the organization gauges his proximity to the major leagues.

     

    2013 Outlook

    After cleaning up his mechanics and sharpening his command in 2012, Biddle will head to Double-A with a chance to assert himself as the organization’s next great homegrown left-hander.

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