Philadelphia Phillies Bolster Infield Prospects in 2011 MLB Draft

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Philadelphia Phillies Bolster Infield Prospects in 2011 MLB Draft
Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images
The Phillies homegrown infield trio has rewarded the franchise with 11 All-Star Games and a World Series title. But now as they are all in their thirties, it is time the team begins looking for their successors.

For many years, the Philadelphia Phillies have employed the same tactic when it comes to the MLB draft.  That tactic is to draft "slot" players early and target the best athlete available regardless of position. After the first few rounds they continue to target athletes but will go "overslot" to sign a few.

For those unfamiliar with the term "slot," the Commissioner's Office makes a recommendation to each team about how much money they should spend at each slot in the draft.  That recommendation is known as "slot."  Signing anyone for more than that amount is known as going "overslot."

That tactic has resulted in the Phillies drafting a lot of players, usually outfielders, with a very high ceiling but who are also very raw.  Sometimes this works out, like when the Phillies drafted an extremely raw Domonic Brown in 20th round of the 2006 draft, as Brown was "Baseball America's" top prospect of 2010.

Sometimes it doesn't work out, like when the Phillies took Anthony Hewitt with their first round pick in the 2008 draft.  It's now his fourth year in the system and Hewitt is still toiling in A-Ball hitting just .227.

This year marked a change in their draft philosophy.  The Philadelphia Phillies' farm system has been for the most part devoid of serious infield talent since Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard made it to the bigs.  In addition, they just dealt their best infield prospect, first baseman Jon Singleton, to the Houston Astros.

In an apparent attempt to remedy that shortcoming, the Phillies selected infielders early and often in this year's draft.  With the August 15th signing deadline having come and gone, we now know which of these players have made it into the Phillies' farm system.

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