This Philadelphia Phillies system has long been one I’ve considered overrated. Call it hindsight, 20/20 vision, or whatever you will, but guys like Maikel Franco, J.P Crawford, and other just didn’t excite me much. At least, not at the level they were getting hyped at. Crawford as one of the top five prospects in all of baseball? Give me a break. Give me a break. Break me off a piece of that no freaking way bar. I know it’s not as catchy as the actual Kit Kat jungle, but again, no way. I’m not saying these two and other Phillies prospects like them aren’t decent ball players. They are. But the hype on them seemed to be way overblown.
You might think I’m bashing on this system. Okay, I might have been a little, but as a whole, this is a solid system with plenty of depth both offensively and on the mound. The high upside players are few and far between, but what this system lacks in high upside it makes up for in overall talent and sheer depth. Beyond this top-25, I could’ve put nearly a dozen more into this article. Think of this system as the report card that won’t get you on the honor roll, but also won’t get you in trouble with mom and dad.
Overall System Grade: C+
Minor League Affiliates
Triple-A: Lehigh Valley – International League
Double-A: Reading – Eastern League
Single-A (Advanced): Clearwater – Florida State League
Single-A (Full): Lakewood – South Atlantic League
Short-season Single-A: Williamsport – New York-Penn League
Rookie: Two teams each in the Gulf Coast League and the Dominican Summer League
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New Top 25 Philadelphia Phillies Prospects
1. Alec Bohm, 3B, Bats: R, DOB: 8/3/96, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (RK/A-): .252/.335/..324/.659, 6 2B, 0 HR, 3 SB, 7.6 BB%, 14.6 K%, 139 AB
Don’t worry, there’s plenty of power on the way. Ignore that goose egg above completely. Bohm was considered one of the top power bats in the 2018 draft class and nothing has changed. Bohm’s quick right-handed swing generates plenty of hard contact and loft to all fields. His plate coverage is phenomenal as well which should allow him to hit for both power and average long term. There’s very little speed to speak of which extends into below-average range at third base. Couple that with an average at best throwing arm and it’s easy to see Bohm sliding over to first base in time. Whichever corner of the diamond he lands at, his offensive profile will fit just fine.
2. Adonis Medina, RHP, DOB: 12/18/96, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+): 111.1 IP, 4.12 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 2.9 BB/9, 9.9 K/9, .245 AVG
Having Adonis Medina and Sanchez in the same Clearwater rotation is flat out unfair. Medina has really shot up prospect rankings over the last few years due to the development of his secondary stuff, which has led to plenty of additional strikeouts. Medina sits in the 93-96 range with his fastball and offsets that with a slider and changeup, both of which have flashed above-average to plus. He was more control than command to start his career, but has really learned how to locate his arsenal over the last two seasons, which raised his strikeout rate from 6.0 in his first three seasons to 10.0 over the last two. Further development of his secondary pitches should help Medina reach his ceiling as an SP2.
3. Luis Garcia, SS, Bats: S, DOB: 10/1/00, ETA 2022
2018 Stats (RK): .369/.433/.488/.921, 11 2B, 1 HR, 12 SB, 8.0 BB%, 11.2 K%, 168 AB
Let’s see, who is the Phillies shortstop of the future? J.P. Crawford? (Buzzer sound). Incorrect. That would be Mr. Luis Garcia, an 18-year-old switch-hitting Dominican shortstop in the Gulf Coast League. There are three reasons I make this claim: Hit tool, speed, and defense. Garcia is an above-average defensive shortstop with good range and a strong throwing arm. He could very easily slide over to second base if needed, but shortstop should be his defensive home long term. At the plate, he uses a contact-oriented approach with quick wrists and good control of the strike zone. Garcia is still raw as a baserunner but has the speed to project 25-30 stolen bases down the road. Definitely a name on the rise. Grab some stock in dynasty leagues now while the price tag is still reasonable.
4. Adam Haseley, OF, Bats: L, DOB: 4/12/96, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+/AA): .305/.361/.433/.794, 17 2B, 5 3B, 11 HR, 7 SB. 6.8 BB%, 14.2 K%, 466 AB
Don’t sleep on Adam Haseley due to lack of a plus tool. This is a solid ballplayer on both sides of the ball. With a quick, clean swing and deep load from the left side, Haseley can spray the ball to all fields due to his outstanding plate coverage and quick wrists. Making contact is a strength of his and he rarely gets fooled. Truly an advanced plate approach that should lead to batting averages near or above .300 annually. The power and speed lag behind his hit tool but both project to be in double-digits with some additional power projection if he adds loft to his line drive swing.
— Peace, love, and dirty feet (@mufuhkajones) April 6, 2018
This is the type of player that will have a long major league career as a starting outfielder but never get a ton of love in the fantasy world. Come on, he’s going to play (barring trade) in the City of Brotherly Love. Can we show some love for Haseley as a strong floor player that makes for a solid OF3 on your fantasy team? I think we can.
5. Jhailyn Ortiz, OF, Bats: R, DOB: 11/18/98, ETA 2021
2018 Stats (A): .225/.297/.375/.672, 18 2B, 13 HR, 2 SB, 7.7 BB%, 32.6 K%, 405 AB
Any conversation about Jhailyn Ortiz has to start with the immense raw power. Immediately following that, the conversation turns into a discussion about his subpar plate discipline. Those swing and miss tendencies lead to plenty of strikeouts and maddening inconsistency. Just take a look at his numbers from April and May this season.
- April (57 AB): .158/.250/.246/.496, 2 2B, 1 HR, 39.1 K%
- May (46 AB): .304/.309/.413/.732, 2 2B, 1 HR, 23.4 K%
Granted, he wasn’t hitting for additional power in May, but he cut down the strikeouts to a much more manageable 23.4% and hit north of .300 that month. In no way, shape, or form am I saying Ortiz has the upside to hit .300 or even close to it. But if he stops chasing pitches outside the zone as much, a .250-.260 average is reasonable to go along with 30-plus homers. There’s plenty of additional power upside than he’s shown so far. Ortiz has a swing geared for hard contact and power. This down season creates a great buy-low window in dynasty leagues.
6. Spencer Howard, RHP, DOB: 7/28/96, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A): 112.0 IP, 3.78 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, 11.8 K/9, .240 AVG
This 2017 second round pick made significant strides with his control in 2018, dropping his BB/9 from 5.7 to 3.2 and cutting nearly a run off of his ERA in the process. Howard has an enticing four-pitch assortment, headlined by a low to mid-90’s heater with life and a slider with good tilt. Additionally, he shows good feel for a cutter and at least a fringe changeup. If he can keep his control in check, Howard could blossom into a high strikeout No. 2 or 3 starter. The man also threw a no-hitter on September 7. Props to you Mr. Howard.
7. Matt Vierling, OF, Bats: R, DOB: 9/16/96, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A-/A): .321/.365/.496/.860, 18 2B, 7 HR, 7 SB, 5.1 BB%, 15.6 K%, 234 AB
A 5th round pick this past June, Vierling has gotten off to a fast start to his minor league career with a 20/20 pace across two levels. Vierling brings a little of everything to the table. At the plate, he uses a balanced pre-pitch setup with good load and a moderate leg kick. The swing is quick and direct through the zone and generates consistent hard contact. Add in some solid plate discipline and Vierling projects to hit for both average and power. But wait, there’s more. Vierling possesses above-average speed and displays good range in the outfield as well. Add in 15-20 steals to that batting average and power upside and now we’re looking at a sneaky-good under-the-radar grab in dynasty leagues.
8. JoJo Romero, LHP, DOB: 9/9/96, ETA 2019
2018 Stats (AA): 106.2 IP, 3.80 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 3.5 BB/9, 8.4 K/9, .245 AVG
Armed with at least four average or better offerings and plus command, Romero has the makings of a high floor, mid-rotation arm with the ceiling of an SP2. Romero sits in the low to mid-90’s with life and mixes in a slew of offspeed pitches, the best of which is his cutter and changeup. That cutter has really become a weapon for him against right-handers, inducing plenty of weak contact when he locates it on the inner half. Romero throws both a slider and curve at times and would greatly benefit from developing one into a consistent breaking ball. Expect to see him in Philadelphia by early-2020 with late-2019 a distinct possibility.
9. Daniel Brito, 2B, Bats: L, DOB: 1/23/98, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A/A+): .252/.307/.342/.649, 18 2B, 4 HR, 16 SB, 7.1 BB%, 17.7 K%, 421 AB
Signed out of Venezuela in 2014, Brito doesn’t wow you with any one aspect of his game. However, he posses solid tools across the board that should carry him to the Majors within the next 2-3 years. The batting average and speed departments are where he can do the most damage. Brito’s swing is clean from the left side with plus bat speed and plate coverage. He’s done a great job at limiting his strikeouts during his career and projects as a solid source of batting average moving forward. The power output has been very limited to date, but there’s more power projection if he can add some loft to his swing. Overall, the upside is a .280/10/20 starting middle infielder with a solid floor.
10. Francisco Morales, RHP, DOB: 10/27/99, ETA 2021/2022
2018 Stats (A-): 56.1 IP, 5.27 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 5.3 BB/9, 10.9 K/9, .244 AVG
While the surface numbers don’t jump out at you, Morales held his own as an 18-year-old in the short-season New York-Penn League this season. At his best, Morales has two plus pitches in his mid-90’s riding fastball and slider, and has shown feel for a changeup, though it’s not a consistent offering for him right now. The upside here is fairly high if that changeup develops into at least an average pitch for him and he starts locating his pitches better. If he does, look for him to shoot up prospect rankings in the next year or two.
11. Jake Scheiner, 3B, Bats: R, DOB: 8/13/95, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A): .296/.372/.470/.842, 30 2B, 13 HR, 10 SB, 9.5 BB%, 15.7 K%, 453 AB
A fourth round pick in 2017, Scheiner made significant strides in his development this season in A-ball. His standout tool is his hit tool, which combines strong contact skills and plate approach. The swing is quick and geared for gap shots at the moment, but don’t be surprised if he develops into a 20-25 home run hitter. Defensively, he’s moved around the diamond over the last couple seasons, playing first, second, third, and some outfield. That versatility could wind up being huge for him as he progresses towards Philly.
12. Austin Listi, 1B/OF, Bats: R, DOB: 11/5/93, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+/AA): .312/.412/.502/.915, 25 2B, 18 HR, 0 SB, 12.2 BB%, 18.5 K%, 426 AB
A 17th round selection in 2017 out of Dallas Baptist University, Listi was a little older than most players entering the minors (23), but has performed well at every step along the way. Age is just a number, after all. Listi has combined for 65 extra-base hits (25 HR), through his first 621 professional at-bats and projects as a 20-25 home run hitter long term thanks to his above-average raw power and quick right-handed swing. There’s not much speed at all here, which limits him to first base or a corner outfield spot defensively. Listi employs an advanced approach at the plate and doesn’t often chase pitches outside the strike zone, leading me to believe he will hit for a decent average more often than not. I’d love to rank Listi higher than this. However, I want to see how he handles more advanced pitching in the upper minors before bumping him up.
13. Arquimedes Gamboa, SS, Bats: S, DOB: 9/23/97, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+): .214/.304/.279/.583, 14 2B, 2 HR, 6 SB, 10.7 BB%, 22.3 K%, 434 AB
First off, this is a 70-grade name at least. A few letter changes and you have Archimedes Balboa, Greek mathematician and heavyweight boxing champion. Okay, moving on. Gamboa didn’t have the greatest 2018 season, but showed glimpses of his enticing skillset. A good defender, Gamboa uses his plus speed to his advantage at short with above-average range and a strong arm, That speed hasn’t translated to the stolen base department yet, but he projects as a 20-25 SB threat. At the plate, Gamboa’s swing is clean and generates hard contact from both sides of the plate. With some added loft, he could grow into double-digit pop. Now is a good time to grab him in deeper dynasty leagues.
14. Enyel De Los Santos, RHP, DOB: 12/25/95, ETA Debuted in 2018
2018 Stats (AAA): 126.2 IP, 2.63 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 3.1 BB/9, 7.8 K/9, .226 AVG
2018 Stats (MLB): 19.0 IP, 4.74 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, 3.8 BB/9, 7.1 K/9, .271 AVG
This is your standard mid-rotation starter in this system. De Los Santos fastball/changeup mix and solid command give him a solid base as a #3/4 starter. It will all come down to the development of his curveball, which shows good depth at times, but is far too inconsistent. De Los Santos earned a few starts with the Phillies down the stretch but will likely head back to Triple-A Lehigh Valley as the Phillies appear to have their rotation already set for 2018 and could bring in a starter to bolster the rotation behind Aaron Nola and Jake Arrieta.
15. Mickey Moniak, OF, Bats: L, DOB: 5/13/98, ETA 2020/2021
2018 Stats (A+): .270/.304/.383/.687, 28 2B, 5 HR, 6 SB, 4.7 BB%, 21.5 K%, 433 AB
Moniak is a prime example of what I was talking about in my intro. The Phillies saved themselves some money by taking Moniak with the top overall pick back in 2016, passing up guys like Nick Senzel, Ian Anderson, A.J. Puk, and Alex Kirilloff. If I could insert a clip of Homer Simpson saying “Doh!” I would right here. Moniak has some solid contact skills, but doesn’t put a charge into many batted balls. He’s got some gap power and that’s about it. Maybe he develops double-digit power, but that’s a big maybe. Outside of that, he’s got a little speed and is a capable defender in the outfield, and because of that, he’ll likely make it to the Major Leagues within the next few years. Just don’t expect a whole heck of a lot when he does arrive.
16. Dylan Cozens, OF, Bats: L, DOB: 5/31/94, ETA 2019
2018 Stats (AAA): .246/.345/.529/.874, 17 2B, 21 HR, 9 SB, 13.2 BB%, 35.6 K%, 297 AB
2018 Stats (MLB): .158/.273/.289/.562, 2 2B, 1 HR, 1 SB, 13.6 BB%, 54.5 K%, 38 AB
It’s truly a shame when this much raw power gets wasted by an atrocious hit tool. Cozens has mashed 88 home runs over the last three minor league seasons (1,294 AB), which is a 41-homer pace over 600 at-bats. So why is he ranked this low on the list? How about a .245 batting average and a 34.1% strikeout rate. Okay, that average isn’t in Joey Gallo levels of disgusting, but unless he stops chasing pitches outside the zone, don’t expect any averages above that at the Major League level. The 70-grade raw power makes him an intriguing dynasty league target, but the aggressive, swing at everything approach needs to be tamed.
— Lehigh Valley IronPigs (@IronPigs) August 26, 2018
17. Darick Hall, 1B, Bats: R, DOB: 7/25/95, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+/AA): .244/.323/.462/.784, 22 2B, 26 HR, 2 SB, 6.8 BB%, 22.3 K%, 468 AB
Big man, big power. That’s the easiest way to describe Darick Hall. Hall uses all of that 6’4, 240-pound frame and generates hard contact with good leverage to his swing. The strikeouts have been kept in check in the 20-25% range for his career, though, Hall could really benefit from working the count more. For now, he looks like a hitter that will mash taters in the minors until he improves his plate approach enough to become an impact bat at the Major League level.
18. Ranger Suarez, LHP, DOB: 8/26/95, ETA Debuted in 2018
2018 Stats (AA/AAA): 124.1 IP, 2.75 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 2.5 BB/9, 6.2 K/9, .244 AVG
2018 Stats (MLB): 15.0 IP, 5.40 ERA, 1.80 WHIP, 3.6 BB/9, 6.6 K/9, .339 AVG
After a strong showing in the upper minors, Suarez earned a few starts with the Phillies down the stretch. Command is his calling card and really boosts his four-pitch arsenal which features a low 90’s fastball, two inconsistent breaking balls, and a plus changeup with fade and depth. The upside isn’t overly high here, but there’s a solid floor as a No. 4 starter.
19. Starlyn Castillo, RHP, DOB: 2/24/02, ETA 2024
2018: DID NOT PITCH
Considered one of the top 3-4 arms available in the 2018 international market, Castillo signed with the Phillies for $1,600,000 and immediately becomes one of the most intriguing arms in the system due to an electric fastball, plus slider, and developing changeup. Definitely a name to monitor over the next few years to see how he transitions to minor league ball.
20. Cole Irvin, LHP, DOB: 1/31/94, ETA 2019
2018 Stats (AAA): 161.1 IP, 2.57 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 2.0 BB/9, 7.3 K/9, .227 AVG
A strong showing for Triple-A Lehigh Valley has Cole Irvin knocking on the door to Philly. A big 6’4 southpaw, Irvin has gotten by, and performed quite well, with a rather average four-pitch arsenal due to his feel for pitching and plus control. Now three seasons into his minor league career, Irvin has never recorded a walk rate above 2.6 and sits at 2.0 BB/9 for his career. He has the makings of an innings-eating #4 starter.
21. Kyle Young, LHP, DOB: 12/2/97, ETA 2021
2018 Stats (RK/A-/A): 59.1 IP, 2.73 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 1.4 BB/9, 7.6 K/9, .222 AVG
At 6’10, Young is an imposing force of a southpaw, yet, doesn’t have the fastball to match. Young sits in the low-90’s with his fastball, but his plus command of the pitch makes it quite effective. He’ll mix in a changeup and a slider, both of which should be average offerings at least, with the slider flashing plus at times.
22. David Parkinson, LHP, DOB: 12/14/95, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A/A+): 124.1 IP, 1.45 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 2.5 BB/9, 10.2 K/9, .202 AVG
24th?! Did you see those numbers Eric? Yes, yes I did since I typed them out all by myself. This is a prime example why I preach that numbers don’t always tell the whole story. Yes, Parkinson had a phenomenal season in 2018. No doubt about it. But the soon-to-be 23-year-old southpaw doesn’t have the arsenal you’d expect for a guy with these numbers. He’s dominated the lower minors with a four-pitch assortment of average offerings due to the fact that he has a good feel for pitching, mixing pitches, and changing the hitter’s eye level. It will be interesting to see if this success continues with Double-A Reading in 2019.
23. Will Stewart, LHP, DOB: 7/14/97, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A): 113.2 IP, 2.06 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, 1.7 BB/9, 7.1 K/9, .218 AVG
A 20th-round selection in 2015, Stewart took a big step forward this season in the Single-A South Atlantic League, cutting his ERA and walk rate by more than half from 2017. Stewart features four pitches: A low-90’s fastball with life, sinking two-seamer, an above-average changeup that he varies the speed of, and a slider that is inconsistent but has good tilt when he’s throwing it right. A funky delivery and lower arm slot causes deception on the mound but has me wondering if he can remain a starter longterm.
24. Jose Pujols, OF, Bats: R, DOB: 9/29/95, ETA 2020
2018 Stats (A+/AA): .295/.365/.503/.868, 18 2B, 22 HR, 3 SB, 9.6 BB%, 33.0 K%, 441 AB
Pujols is one of the Phillies prospects I would love to rank higher, but the contact skills and swing and miss tendencies ultimately held me back. That .295 average in 2018 was severely aided by a .425 BABIP in Class-A Advanced and a .392 BABIP in Double-A. There’s some appeal here due plus raw power, but until he develops a better approach at the dish, the batting average is likely to be below .250 or so.
25. Kevin Gowdy, RHP, DOB: 11/16/97, ETA 2021
2018 Stats: Did Not Pitch
Was a first-round talent with the potential for three above-average or better pitches that has missed the last two seasons due to Tommy John surgery.
Others to Watch
Kyle Dohy, LHP – Racks up the strikeouts out of the bullpen with a plus fastball/slider combination, but lacks control. Could see him up in the Phillies bullpen later this season.
Up – Luis Garcia (SS), Jake Scheiner (3B)
Down – Mickey Moniak (OF)
Other Team Prospect Reports
Eric Cross is the lead MLB writer and prospect analyst here on FantraxHQ and has been with the site since March 2017. In the past, he wrote for FantasyPros and FanSided. He is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA). For more from Eric, check out his author page and follow him on Twitter @EricCross04.