Philadelphia Phillies Top 15 Prospects (2012-13)

The Phillies organization has a pair of impressive left-handed arms at the top of the list, followed by some interesting, but largely inexperienced, prospects.

 

#1 Jesse Biddle (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
20 26 26 142.2 129 10 9.53 3.41 3.22 3.24

The Phillies organization has developed some interesting arms in recent years with the likes of Jarred Cosart (traded to Houston), Brody Colvin (regressed), and Biddle — who has risen to the top of the organization. The lefty has a big, strong frame and has been durable throughout his three-year career, pitching more than 134 innings each of the last two years. The former first round draft pick has a four-pitch repertoire and his best offering is an 88-93 mph fastball. Biddle, 21, also has a promising curveball, as well as a slider and changeup.


The southpaw’s command is solid and his control improved noticeably in 2012. He struck out 151 batters in 143 minor league innings last year but he could stand to work down in the zone more consistently and trim his fly-ball rate. Biddle will move up to double-A in 2013 and could reach the majors late in the year or at some point in 2014. He has the ceiling of a No. 2 or 3 starter capable of providing 200+ innings.

 

#2 Adam Morgan (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
22 27 26 158.2 137 9 9.59 2.21 3.35 2.58

Morgan, a 2011 third round pick, saw his prospect value explode last year. He opened the year with a challenge-assignment to high-A ball where he struck out 140 batters (with just 28 walks) in 123 innings. He earned a promotion to double-A late in the year and made six starts. Like fellow left-handed prospect Jesse Biddle, Morgan has a four-pitch repertoire. It includes an 89-94 mph fastball, curveball and two potentially-plus offerings in a slider and changeup.

The southpaw is not quite as physical as Biddle but he held up for 159 innings in 2012. The Alabama native has good control and his command is at least average. Morgan, 23, will likely open 2013 back in double-A but should see triple-A in the second half of the year, unless injuries unexpectedly crop up. He has the ceiling of a No. 3 starter.

 

#3 Roman Quinn (SS)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
19 309 75 9 1 28 61 30 .281 .370 .408 .369

A personal favorite of fellow FanGraphs prospect analyst Mike Newman, Quinn has plus-plus speed on the base paths and he’s a potentially-plus defender at shortstop, although he played mostly the outfield as an amateur. The Florida native has above-average arm strength and plus range but is still learning the intricacies of the position.

Quinn, who turns 20 in May, has a solid offensive debut in shorts-season ball in 2012 despite being fairly new to switch-hitting. He’s not a huge guy but he has solid gap pop. He’ll open 2013 in low-A ball and will look to develop into one of the top shortstop prospects in the game — and the Phillies’ shortstop of the future.

 

#4 Jonathan Pettibone (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
21 26 26 159.2 146 9 6.37 2.76 3.10 3.53

Pettibone stands 6’5” with a strong frame but he’s not a fire-baller. His fastball works in the 88-92 mph range and his second-best offering is a changeup. He also throws a slider with above-average potential. Pettibone has solid command and above-average control.

The right-hander doesn’t have a huge ceiling but he’s durable and could provide a ton of innings as a No. 4 starter at the big league level. His high ground-ball rates help to compensate for his lack of a strikeout pitch. Pettibone should open 2013 in triple-A but he has a solid shot at pitching in the majors when injuries strike the veteran starting rotation.

 

#5 Cody Asche (2B/3B)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
22 658 193 44 13 42 109 11 .318 .365 .474 .379

Asche is the first of two intriguing third base prospects in the system. A fourth rounder out of the University of Nebraska in 2011, the prospect hit below .200 with little pop during his pro debut. Even so, he earned an opening day assignment to high-A ball last year and reached double-A in the second half of the year. Defensively, he’s solid but unspectacular with a good arm and average range.

Asche, 22, has a solid left-handed stroke and good bat speed. He doesn’t generate a ton of pop and has average-at-best power potential for a third baseman. He’s also too aggressive at the plate but he produces decent contact rates. After a solid performance in the Arizona Fall League, Asche is probably ready for triple-A with an eye towards taking over the hot corner for the Phillies in 2014.

 

#6 Maikel Franco (3B)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
19 554 140 32 14 38 80 3 .278 .334 .437 .350

Franco, 20, is two levels behind Cody Asche but the Dominican Republic native has a higher ceiling. The batter has impressive right-handed power potential, although he gets too pull happy at times and struggles with breaking balls. He also needs to be more selective.

Defensively, Franco has a powerful arm and handles everything hit to him, but he has modest range thanks to his questionable body and well-below-average foot speed. It’s possible that his body could soften up too much as he ages, forcing him across the diamond to first base. Franco will move up to high-A in 2013. He has his fair share of warts, but the corner infielder is very young and could eventually blow past Asche as the third baseman of the future.

 

#7 Tommy Joseph (C)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
20 504 114 25 11 40 104 1 .252 .314 .380 .317

A former San Francisco Giants draft pick, Joseph came to the Philly’s organization in the Hunter Pence deal from last season. An offensive-minded backstop, he had a modest season with the bat at the double-A level in 2012 while splitting the year between the two organizations. Joseph has an aggressive approach at the plate that works against him at times and leads to low on-base rates. He could see his power numbers increase if he waits for better pitches to drive and gets into more favorable pitch counts. His has plus raw power.

Behind the plate, Joseph projects as an average defender thanks to his strong arm and solid receiving skills. He’s a big guy with a thick lower half and doesn’t move around very well. The Arizona native has passed fellow catching prospect Sebastian Valle on the depth chart and should open the season in triple-A. With the 25-game suspension to veteran big league starter Carlos Ruiz, Joseph could see the majors early in the year if projected fill-in Erik Kratz gets off to a slow start.

 

#8 Ethan Martin (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
23 27 27 157.2 118 8 8.39 4.51 3.48 3.56

Acquired last year from the Los Angeles Dodgers during the Shane Victorino swap, Martin had two disappointing seasons between 2010 and ‘11. He rebounded in ’12, but still has a lot of work to do. The right-hander has plus velocity and it sits in the 92-94 mph range and touches 97. His slider has plus potential and both his curveball and changeup could become average offerings.

Martin has yet to dominate in the minors because he struggles with both his command and control; it got so bad in 2011 that he was banished to the bullpen. At 23 years of age, and with three minor-league options remaining, Martin has time to improve in those areas and his solid athleticism gives him a shot. If things fail to click, he could end up as an eighth-inning reliever. He should open 2013 in triple-A and will likely spend the entire year there.

 

#9 Darin Ruf (1B/OF)


Age PA HR SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ Fld WAR
25 37 3 0 .333 .351 .727 .428 171 0.6 0.5

Ruf exceeded all expectations in 2012 after opening the year as organizational cannon fodder. A former 20th round draft pick, the slugger put 38 balls over the fence in double-A, while hitting .317, and it earned him a promotion to the majors in September. He added another three taters in 33 at-bats and now enters spring training as the favorite in left field for the Phillies, although he’ll face competition from Domonic Brown.

Ruf’s lone plus tool is his power and he’s not likely to be a .300 hitter in the majors but he’s improved his approach at the plate and should produce a respectable batting average – as long as he keeps the strikeout rate at a reasonable level. Originally a first baseman, he’s blocked by Ryan Howard so left field is the only opportunity the rookie has, barring injury. In the field, Ruf has below-average range and a fringe-average arm. Ruf is still learning routes and to read the ball effectively.

 

#10 Shane Watson (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
18 5 3 7.0 5 0 10.29 1.29 1.29 1.77

The club’s first selection in the 2012 amateur draft (40th overall in the supplemental first round), Watson has an impressive pitcher’s frame and a solid delivery. His fastball sits in the 88-93 mph range and can hit 94-96 mph at times. His curveball has plus potential and his changeup should be at least average.

Watson, 19, displays solid control for his age and experience level. He was diagnosed with diabetes after turning pro but has learned to control it. The right-handed California native will open 2013 in extended spring training before potentially returning to rookie ball, or moving up to the New York Penn League. He has the ceiling of a No. 3 starter.

 

#11 Carlos Tocci (OF)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
16 107 27 2 0 6 18 9 .278 .330 .299 .307

A big-dollar international signee in 2011, Tocci is a four-tool prospect with his power being his lone below-average skill. Standing 6’2’’, the Venezuelan is rail-thin but he projects to hit for average and some gap power because he has good bat speed, a line-drive swing and isn’t afraid to use the whole field, even as a teenager. His plus speed helped him go nine-for-11 in steals in rookie ball. It also benefits him immensely in the field.

Tocci, 18, is a plus defender in center field with outstanding range and a strong arm. He’s also instinctual and makes it look easy. Extremely raw, the young hitter will return to extended spring training in 2013 before moving up to the New York Penn League, a league dominated by college-aged pitchers. Tocci is years away from reaching the majors but he could develop into the club’s center-fielder-of-the-future.

 

#12 Ken Giles (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
21 39 6 82.0 64 6 12.18 5.49 3.51 3.49

Giles has perhaps the biggest fastball in the organization and has quickly moved up the depth charts as a 2011 seventh round draft pick. The right-hander has a fastball that can touch 98-99 mph. He entered pro ball with just one usable pitch but has made significant strides with his slider that now has the potential to develop into an above-average offering.

Giles, 22, has effort to his delivery, and struggles with both his command and control. He walked 50 batters in 82.0 innings but also struck out 111 between two A-ball levels. Giles will probably return to high-A ball to open 2013 but could see double-A by the end of the season. He has the makeup and intensity to develop into a high-leverage reliever.

 

#13 Austin Wright (P)


Age G GS IP H HR K/9 BB/9 ERA FIP
22 27 25 147.2 146 11 8.11 3.66 3.47 3.73

An eighth round draft pick out of the University of Mississippi in 2011, Wright has improved significantly since turning pro. The lefty is a former two-way player so the full-time focus on his mound work has no doubt helped his development. Wright, who has a strong pitcher’s frame, has more velocity than most left-handers and can dial his heater up into the 93-94 mph range. He also has a potentially-plus curveball.

Wright, 23, needs to improve his control and also sharpen his changeup, although he’s held his own against right-handed batters to this point. He’ll move up to double-A in 2013 and has the ceiling of an innings-eating No. 3 or 4 starter. Wright could see the majors at some point in 2014.

 

#14 Larry Greene (OF)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
19 303 70 22 2 41 78 1 .272 .373 .381 .360

You wouldn’t know it by looking at his home run column (two dingers) from 2012, but Greene has massive power potential from the left-hand side. The Georgia native slugged 22 doubles in 70 games during his debut season in the New York Penn League. He also took a healthy number of walks but struck out at a rate of more than once per game. Unless he learns to handle breaking balls better and closes some holes in his swing, he’s not likely to hit for much of an average.

Greene, 20, also doesn’t run well and he’s limited to left field thanks to his fringe-average range and average arm. The former supplemental first round pick will likely make his full-season debut in low-A ball in 2013 but should spend most, if not all, of the year at that level. He’s a few years away from adding some much-needed left-handed pop to the Phillies’ right-hand-heavy lineup.

 

#15 Sebastian Valle (C)


Age PA H 2B HR BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA
21 411 98 15 17 13 114 0 .253 .271 .428 .306

Just 22 with six pro seasons under belt, Valle’s over-aggressive approach at the plate continues to hinder his offensive development. He walked just 13 times in 105 games. The free swinger also struck out 115 times but went deep 17 times, flashing his power potential from the right side of the plate.

Behind the dish, Valle flashes average — but inconsistent — potential. He is a decent receiver and has a strong arm but needs to improve his foot work and blocking. The Mexico native is a step ahead of fellow catching prospect Tommy Joseph but his standing in the organization has taken a bit of a hit. He should return to triple-A in 2013 where he would split time behind the plate with Joseph. However, Valle has a small chance to break camp with the Phillies thanks to the suspension of incumbent Carlos Ruiz, assuming he can beat out non-roster invitees such as Humberto Quintero and Steve Lerud.




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Marc Hulet has been writing at FanGraphs since 2008. His work focuses on prospect analysis. Follow him on Twitter @marchulet.

37 Responses to “Philadelphia Phillies Top 15 Prospects (2012-13)”

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  1. rotowizard says:

    A rather uninspiring list. I do like Quinn and Greene though.

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  2. Stringer Bell says:

    The Phillies are so screwed for the future

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    • rotowizard says:

      The sad thing being that they have some talent at the major league level that would provide some valuable pieces in a trade, but the contracts for said players are just so unreasonable that it’s made it nearly impossible for them to gain any kind of legitimate asset without taking on vast amounts of the remaining salary.

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      • LTG says:

        I’m not sure why you are being cagey about naming the players. But I assume you mean Halladay, Lee, and Papelbon? I’m glad the Phillies haven’t moved them. They would not have gotten A-talent in return, and with them they have a chance to compete (albeit a slim chance) this year. Salaries are a problem for the team but not because they make trading key pieces difficult. Rather, the salaries have prevented the FO from signing a big name this offseason. Instead, they have made small moves that, taken together, neither improve nor worsen the club.

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        • Clifford says:

          pretty sure hes more referring to Utley, Howard, Rollins, Polanco(last year), Papelbon….i dont think anyone is complaining about Halladay or Lee’s contract in Philly. trust me. there may have been whispers of dealing one of the 2 last year, but that was less about their contracts and more about their age/perceived future value.

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        • LTG says:

          But Howard is untradeable as a talent now, not just because of that awful, awful contract. Utley has been hurt and teams probably aren’t willing to trade for an oft-injured player. Polanco was constantly hurt last year too, so ditto for him. Rollins contract is eminently reasonable for a solid defensive SS with a decent offensive profile. So, who else could he be referring to that a) has a contact teams wouldn’t want and b) would be desirable in a trade. Even Halladay is a question mark here I guess. So, really just Lee and Papelbon clearly fit the bill.

          Also, I’m a Phillies fan who knows other Phillies fans. I know which contracts “people” are complaining about. I don’t care about the perception, but the reality that supports (or not) the claim above.

          But the main point here is that trading these players just aggressively shuts the window to compete with no obvious plan for opening it again, since the talent they would get in return would be B level at best and they have no prospects ready to replace that production this year or in the next 3 years, if at all.

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      • nik says:

        Its funny that people think the Phils need to dump their talent.

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    • Clifford says:

      no they arent. last time i checked, the yanks havent had any propsects outside of Cano, Robertson, and Gardner really contribute to their multiple WS wins in the last 10 years.

      more importantly, the Phillies have been seemingly very slow at bringing prospects to the big league level recently. Ryan Howard didnt become an everyday regular until he was 26. Carlos Ruiz didnt become the everyday catcher until he was 28.

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      • LTG says:

        I don’t agree that they are screwed, but Cano and Gardner are great prospect hits! Where are the Phillies’ Cano and Gardner? And you are forgetting Phil Hughes, Chien-Ming Wang (when he was good), and the young talent they have traded in order to get established talent. The Yankees farm system has contributed to their success recently in a way that the Phillies farm no longer can, for now.

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        • m as in mancy says:

          singleton.

          oh, but we needed pence, right right…

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        • Clifford says:

          Really? You brought up Phil Hughes and Wang as examples of prospects that helped out the Yankees?…Hughes has a career ERA of 4.39, and a WHIP of 1.29, while compiling a total career WAR of 9.0 over the course of 6 seasons in the majors. Gardy had 2 great seasons in 2010 and 2011, where he compiled 11.4 total WAR….but the majority of that was tied to his defensive value. Not saying he isnt a great player, but hes not an elite player either.

          where are the phillies Cano and Gardy??…hmm, how bout Carlos Ruiz, Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Cole Hamels, and I would even include guys like Singleton, Villar, etc., who they were able to trade in order to get back players to help them for the stretch run and into the playoffs.

          The Phillies had FAR more homegrown talent help them win a WS title in 2008 than the Yankees did in 2009….and its really not close….Tex, ARod, Grandy, Swisher, CC, Damon, Matsui, etc were all key guys in 2009…the Yanks really only had Cano, Jeter, Gardner, and Posada as regulars who were from their system…

          the Phillies won in 2008, starting Carlos Ruiz, Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Pat Burrell, Jayson Werth, and Shane Victorino(who was a Rule 5 pick, yes, but mine as well have been in the Phillies farm system given that he was a nobody before he came to Philly)…and in their rotation, they had Cole Hamels, Kyle Kendrick, Brett Myers, and JA Happ

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        • Heisenberg says:

          “Where are the Phillies’ Cano and Gardner? And are you forgetting Phil Hughes, Chien-Ming Wang (when he was good), and the young talent they have traded in order to get established talent”

          I’d say the Phillies Cano and Gardner would be Howard, Rollins and Utley. And the Phillies developed Cole Hamels, who I think might be a little bit better than Phil Hughes? And bringing up Wang doesn’t make any sense. He has a very mediocre resume. I don’t care how many wins the Yankees offense got him, he wasn’t all that good. Kyle Kendrick (also homegrown) has had a better career than Wang.
          Also, are you honestly forgetting all the young talent the Phillies used to turn into Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, and Hunter Pence? Doesn’t matter if they haven’t panned out, fact of the matter is that other teams wanted what the Phillies had. Drabek, Singleton, Cosart, Gose, Michael Taylor, D’Arnaud, Happ etc. All highly rated prospects when they were traded.

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        • LTG says:

          Wang was the staff ace on two playoff teams before injuries ruined him. He wasn’t great, but he was better than Tyler Cloyd. Hughes has been up and down but is a solid back-of-the-rotation guy.

          The Phillies produced a good initial crop of prospects in Burrell, Myers, Rollins, Utley, Howard, Hamels, and Chooch on the back of great draft positions with very bad teams in the 90s. Compare that to the Yankees, who produced Jeter, Williams, Rivera, Posada, Pettitte, plus role players on the back of their last run of bad (tho not as bad) teams. What the Yankees have done that the Phillies haven’t done is produce above average, non-relief players after becoming a perennial winner. Which is to say, the Phillies haven’t produced a Cano nor a Gardner, not even a Wang. (Objection: Vance Worley. Yeah, this is the one player who has made an impact and was drafted after the team lost its good draft positions. So, that’s one. Any more?)

          Now, on to the trading question, because, of course, we don’t really care whether home-grown talent ends up on the field, just that talent ends up on the field. Yes, the Phillies got Lee, Hallady, and Oswalt by trading farm pieces. (Let’s not discuss Pence. That was a fleecing.) But they can’t do that anymore. The Phillies farm system does not currently have the pieces to trade for an impact player. Meanwhile, the Yankees have continued to produce talent to use in trades. They still have some today. And, thus, they are in a much more flexible position than the Phillies.

          The point here is really simple. The Phillies built a great farm system on the back of great drafting positions. When those great drafting positions stopped, the farm system began to decay. This will lead to the decay of the MLB team because no amount of money can buy enough talent to win. Even the Yankees know this. Unlike the Yankees, the Phillies have not used their resources to sustain their success.

          Finally, correcting some errors. Jayson Werth is not a home-grown talent. He was oft-injured and kicking around MLB when the Phillies picked him up and gave him a chance to play. Victorino spent almost no time in the Phillies farm system, so I’m not sure why we should count him as home-grown. Kendrick did not pitch in the 08 postseason. Happ pitched 3 innings in one game. Both were drafted before the Phillies lost their good drafting positions.

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      • HenduforKutch says:

        Multiple WS wins in the last 10 years? The Yankees have only won 1 WS in the past 12 years. And that is with the financial advantage over the rest of baseball that the Phillies simply aren’t going to be able to duplicate.

        It also ignores prospects and young players traded like Austin Jackson, Phil Coke, Ian Kennedy, Melky Cabrera, Arodys Vizcaino, Zach McAllister, Jesus Montero, Mark Melancon, Tyler Clippard, and Jose Tabata.

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        • Clifford says:

          the fact that you had to even mention Zach McAllister, Phil Coke, and Jose Tabata proves my point exactly.

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        • LTG says:

          ?

          Because all of the players the Phillies have traded away have panned out? (Gio Gonzalez, Gavin Floyd maybe, are there others?)

          Because those three names were all of them in the list?

          Because Jackson, Kennedy, Cabrera, and Clippard have been terrible baseball players?

          Because the Yankees drafted those guys within the first 15 spots of a round?

          How does this help prove your point?

          I could just as easily mention Michael Taylor, Greg Golson, and Kyle Drabek, as examples of highly ranked Phillies prospects who were traded and have not panned out.

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        • LTG says:

          AlSo, Alfonso Soriano should be on that list. He netted ARod.

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      • Ben says:

        Check your years. Yankees have 1 WS win in the past 10 years, not multiple.

        But I agree the Phillies could be alright due to their huge payroll, the problem is they wont have much spending money because of all the long/bad contracts they have been giving out.

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    • jcxy says:

      Indeed the next dozen years are unlikely to be successful as the last dozen (the Phillies haven’t had a losing season in essentially since 2000). While that’s great insofar as that’s the primary goal of between-the-lines baseball, such an endeavor can ravage your farm system.

      They consistently draft 20-30…where prospects hit maybe 1/3 of the time. So for a decade plus of top picks, you’d expect to accrue maybe 1 “star” and 3 serviceable regulars. Since 2000, they’ve exceeded that. Plus, while they aren’t big dick swingers in the international markets, if you believe BA–they’ve done quite well in Venezuela without having spent a ton of cash.

      But really, I disagree with the proposition that people seem to love to propose here. Which is, they’d be better off today with a terrific farm system rating over the last 3 years occuring by retaining the talent that was shipped out in trades, starting with the one for Lee in 2009. And…while Carrasco/Drabek may yet be good…D’arnaud may yet be a 4 WAR beast…and Singleton, sigh…well, he might get Houston fans to forget all the multiyear reliever contracts Ed Wade handed out…I don’t see how that argument holds water without some excrutiating cherry picking and some vaseline-in-the-eyes squinting in an effort to re-tell playoff fortunes.

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      • LTG says:

        We have to consider the trades each at a time. The trade for Lee, great. The Halladay trade, great. Trading Lee away, a mistake given the moves made later. The Oswalt trade, good given the constraints at the time but see the previous trade. The Pence trade, terrible. And the Pence trade sapped the system. I agree that not every trade that removes talent from the system is a bad trade, but at least one was and probably two. I also wouldn’t have a problem selling out the farm in good trades. But the then the next point becomes relevant.

        We also have to consider their draft strategy. The Yankees have been drafting in the same position as the Phillies for a long time and have produced better talent over that time. The Phillies strategy has been to draft toolsy athletes that they then have to teach to play the game, e.g., Dom Brown. While Brown might still hit (fingers crossed so hard it hurts), it is a very high risk gambit with the opportunity cost of drafting older, refined talents with lower ceilings and higher floors that could help sooner, e.g., Jackie Bradley. So far, the Phillies haven’t been successful here and this makes RAJ’s ransacking of the farm system a bit galling. He did it without a good strategy for replacing the talent removed.

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        • MG says:

          Yanks were willing to pay over slot for players who had fallen in the draft and the Phils hadn’t done for years since the early 00s.

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        • jruby says:

          -”The Phillies strategy has been to draft toolsy athletes that they then have to teach to play the game, e.g., Dom Brown.”

          Dylan Cozens comes to mind recently

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  3. tommy says:

    How close did Kevin Brady come to making the list?

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  4. Mike says:

    Not sure how a team that can support a $175mm+ payroll (maybe more when the TV deal gets done) is ‘so screwed for the future.’

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    • LTG says:

      Money isn’t everything. Even the Yankees have sustained their long run of success by supplementing big name FAs by either a) using prospects to trade for established talent, e.g., Granderson, or b) playing them on the field, e.g., Cano. Right now, the Phillies do not have the ability to trade prospects for established talent nor a Cano waiting in the wings, unless Quinn or Tocci hit their high-end projections. This is already causing problems.

      On the other hand, if they develop their young pitchers and one of their 3B and C prospects hits, they will have the foundation for a good team that can be filled in by wise spending, at least if Ryan Howard regains his 2009 form or retires…

      There is another worry as well. If the team gets bad, the fans will stop going to the park. That will hurt revenue, and the team will cut spending. It will be the 80s and 90s all over again. Then we will be waiting for a gaggle of prospects to convince the FO to spend a little money again, as we were in the late 90s and early 00s.

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      • MG says:

        Yeah it is and it is a big reason why the owners decided to implement a luxury tax threshold with such teeth that even the Yanks are beginning to shy away from really exceeding it every year.

        Only the Dodgers spent like made and that was a unique situation this offseason due to their new contract & the owners wanting/needing to make a huge splash with a frustrated fan base.

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      • MG says:

        Phils’ TV deal is up in 2015. The Phils next TV deal will be at least as large as the Astros did & probably slightly larger which should help to offset what be a notable decline in gate revenues in future year if the Phils don’t make the playoffs this year.

        There payroll likely won’t be as high in ’13 and ’14 but they won’t be the pikers they were for most of the late 80s until CBP opened.

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  5. LTG says:

    Despite previous commenters, this article paints a rosier picture of Phillies prospects than most.

    One bone to pick. You say that the Phillies are a right-hand heavy lineup. But Utley and Howard will still hit in the middle. Rollins hits switch and is better from the left than the right. Revere and Brown hit from the left. Galvis hits switch. Nix hits left. It looks to me like the Phillies are left-hand heavy if anything. Did you mean that, given a reasonable projection of personnel after this year, the Phillies will have a right-hand heavy lineup?

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  6. harmony says:

    Has 24-year-old righthander Phillippe Aumont lost all luster?

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    • Heisenberg says:

      If Aumont improves his command and control, he is going to be a top closer in this league. His fastball pushes 100 MPH and he a ton of sinking life. He pairs that with a wipeout slider.

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    • LTG says:

      Heisenberg is right that his upside is tremendous. He threw a slider to Uggla that made him turn away from the pitch and that broke back onto the plate. It was awesome to watch.

      I think he’s not on the list because he is not up-and-coming anymore. He’s also a known entity: great stuff, wobbly control.

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      • Adam says:

        I imagine Aumont isn’t on here because, given the amount of time he spent in the bigs last year, he’s no longer considered a prospect; however, that logic wouldn’t make sense with Ruf on this list. Perhaps it’s because he’s “just” a reliever and won’t make a really big impact.

        I also noticed the comment about the lineup being RH heavy and couldn’t make any sense of it at all. We are and have been very LH heavy, especially since Werth left for DC.

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        • LTG says:

          Yeah, I though about Ruf too. Perhaps, he counts as a prospect because he only just made a splash last year, while Aumont has been floating around for a while.

          Anecdotally, no prospect list I’ve seen includes the young bullpen pieces (DeFratus, Aumont, etc.).

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        • hk says:

          Jonathan Mayo’s list on MLB.com includes Aumont at #12. Usually players who still have rookie eligibility are considered for prospect lists. Maybe Marc Hulet sees Giles as the closer of the future and only sees Aumont as a set-up guy and, therefore, not top 15 worthy.

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    • Evan says:

      Aumont will likely see some time in the major league bullpen again this year and his stuff is usually pretty fun to watch.

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  7. Tanner John 22 says:

    When is Minnesota’s top 15 slated to post? Been waiting patiently all offseason and without much hope for the season, prospects are all I have to hang my hat on.

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