Prospect Rankings No. 5: Zach Collier

Posted by Ben Seal, Fri, September 25, 2009 12:16 PM | Comments: 13
Posts, Top 25 Prospects from 2009

Zach Collier, OFcollier

Born: 9/8/1990 in Chino Hills, California

Height: 6’2”

Weight: 185

The 2008 Draft was a critical moment for the future hopes of the Phillies organization. With seven picks of the first 136 thanks to compensation picks for losing Aaron Rowand and unsigned selections, there was pressure on the team’s scouts to come up with at least a few big hits to add to the farm. They did just that, finding several top talents to boost the system. The most important player chosen that year could turn out to be Zach Collier (34th overall), a lefty outfielder said to be in the Garrett Anderson mold who still has plenty of room to grow before he can really cash in on his potential.

Though Collier’s statistics don’t look impressive after one full season spent between Williamsport and Lakewood, what they show is a teenager swimming a little bit as he adjusts to pro ball. When he starts next year, likely back at Lakewood before a jump to Clearwater, Collier will be 19 and beginning to fill out physically. He still has about 30 pounds to add to his frame, and once he does that the power numbers will improve quickly. He has a line-drive swing, and if he learns to elevate the ball and get some backspin on it, his strength will translate better and result in extra-base power.

In addition, Collier still has plenty of room for coaching to influence his future. He has good speed but needs to improve his baserunning. He has plenty of internal power but needs to learn how to unlock it. He has a quick swing but needs to learn how to maximize its effectiveness. This may all seem like a lot, but at 19 Collier is more than young enough to give his coaches time to work their magic. A year or two ago the Phillies were in the same spot with Michael Taylor and Domonic Brown, who had all the tools but lacked the polish needed to be put on the fast track to the Majors. As Collier makes his way through the system and learns from the same minds that helped Brown and Taylor mature into well-rounded ballplayers, he should develop in much the same way. That’s not to say he will be on their level by next year, but if he tacks on some muscle and uses his natural ability the potential is there for rapid growth.

“”I understand I’m just out of high school, and I have to develop more, grow into my body,” Collier told the Inquirer in June. “I’m so young I don’t have the physical strength I will have. But I believe that I’ll get there.”

Growing up in California, Collier played on summer league baseball teams with Lakewood speedster Anthony Gose. His friend and teammate is ahead of him on the learning curve right now after leading all of the minor leagues in stolen bases this season, but Collier has a much higher ceiling. Of all the players in the Phillies system, Collier has the best chance of bursting onto the scene next season with a breakout campaign, much like Taylor did in 2008. If he can do that, Collier will add even more top-shelf talent to a very deep pool of Phillies outfielders in the minor leagues.


Year   Level   AB    H   2B   3B   HR   RBI   BB   K   SB   AVG   OBP   SLG

2008   ROOK  129   35   9    1    0    19   17   28   5   .271   .347   .357

2009   A-     137   31   10   1    1    13    9   42    7   .226   .280   .336

2009   A      298   65   16   7    0    32   23   80   13   .218   .275   .319

RankingsAll previous prospect profiles can be found here, which is also on the left sidebar for easy viewing

5.   Zach Collier, OF
6.   Trevor May, RHP
7.   Joe Savery, LHP
8.   Vance Worley, RHP
9.   Sebastian Valle, C
10.  Mike Stutes, RHP
11.  Antonio Bastardo, LHP
12.  Anthony Gose, OF
13.  Colby Shreve, RHP
14.  Anthony Hewitt, 3B
15.  Justin De Fratus, RHP
16.  Sergio Escalona, LHP
17.  Yohan Flande, LHP
18.  Julian Sampson, RHP
19.  John Mayberry, Jr., OF
20.  Mike Cisco, RHP
21.  Freddy Galvis, SS
22.  Jonathan Pettibone, RHP
23.  Domingo Santana, OF
24.  Jonathan Singleton, 1B
25.  Drew Naylor, RHP

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About Ben Seal

Ben Seal has written 48 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 The Original Chuck P

    I like Collier but he has a lot of work to do… add weight, work on his base running, add elevation to his swing, cut down on his strikeouts… but he’s a confident kid with a lot of athleticism. We’ve been spoiled… our high ceiling guys have panned out but I’m not sure if Collier is going to get there. Garrett Anderson is a phenomenal player; a career .295 hitter with 15-20 HR power. He’s a bit heavier than he was earlier in his career but he would hit .300 with 15-20 HR at 195 lbs (now he’s 225)… Collier doesn’t have that in him right now and that’s the difference; he has to gain weight to add power (Garrett did it without adding weight). I like Collier but I’m not sure what type of player he is… the power potential is there but he has to get bigger, the speed is there but if he adds weight he’ll likely lose some of that, he hits line drives right now which would make him a better contact hitter but he has a short swing which gives him the ability to hit home runs. Something has got to give…

  • Posts: 0 Richie

    I cant imagine what the final four guys are going to be becasue you still have Travis D’Arnaud, Michael Taylor, Domonic Brown, Kyle Drabek and Scott Mathieson. I thought Carpenter, Schwimmer and Kendrick would make the list too?

    We have so many outfield prospects (Taylor, Brown, Collier, Gose, Sanatana, etc.) and a solid major league outfield for years to come in Vic and Werth that I would like to see them get some infield depth for when Feliz leaves and also a backup infielder instead of Bruntlett.

  • Posts: 8 Ben Seal

    Avatar of Ben Seal

    There’s a lot to work on with Collier, but I have some confidence that he and his coaches will take the right steps toward improving his problem areas and taking advantage of his talent. He just turned 19, so it’s not that he “has to” gain weight to gain power, but that inevitably he’s going to do just that. And that can only help in the long run.

    Richie, for the interest of this list Mathieson and Kendrick were not considered prospects because of time already spent in the Majors. For the record, though, I really like Mathieson and I hope he stays healthy and figures into the bullpen next season. I thought they could have used him down the stretch run this year, but they probably weren’t confident in his rehab process yet.

  • Posts: 0 Keystone

    Richie, I’ve been thinking the same thing for a while now…yet another OF prospect. Any chance the Phils draft a top notch, high ceiling 2B soon to back up Utley for possible injury, trade, or eventually when the contract ends and he becomes too expensive? Seems like a glaring hole on the farm. And with D’Arnaud, Taylor, Brown, and Drabek rounding out the rest of the rankings that means not a single 2B in the top 25. No one can replace Utley but he does get hit a lot which worries me for the long run.

  • Posts: 0 Richie

    I don’t want to even think about replacing Utley unless there is an injury he should retire a Phillie. At the other infield positions though we may be in some trouble. Which makes a utility prospect very valuable, I really liked Cardenas for that reason, but Blanton has been tremendous for us.

  • Posts: 0 joedad

    Keystone, you can’t have it all. Utley should be here at least another 5 – 7 years so no need to worry about 2nd base for a while. The Phils traded their top 2nd base prospect in a package with last year for Blanton.

  • Posts: 0 Keystone

    Make no mistake, i want Utley here until he retires many years from now. Just noticing an obvious hole in the farm. And again he leads the majors in hit by pitches year in and year out.

  • Posts: 0 PGD

    im a bit confused how gose is 7 spots behind collier, gose had a much better year and is the same age as collier, I dont really see how his potential can be that much greater than a guy like gose. I get that he has a little more power projection but the guy sat around .200 for most of the year

  • Posts: 0 PGD

    plus gose is a superior defensive outfielder with a stronger arm as well

  • Posts: 0 Pete

    Collier at #5?? I don’t think you will find him top-20 on any other off-season prospect lists for the Phils. He was demoted during the season and didn’t even perform well in Williamsport. To be frank, he was horrible this entire season.

    Don’t think you’ll find Hewitt or Sampson on any either.

    Shreve hasn’t thrown a pitch, should probably have Jarred Cosart instead of him, who Baseball America just put as the #4 overall prospect in the Gulf Coast League (ahead of Singleton and Santana).

  • Posts: 0 hamels' left hand

    yea, I admire the attempt but there’s a lot of ‘hopeful’ projection in this list.

    Sampson was demoted and hasn’t improved even a little bit in his time since being drafted. Quite frankly, he’s regressed and noticeably so.

    Hewitt is all tools and no substance.

    And having Collier at 5 while Gose sits outside the top 10 after the year Gose put together for a championship team one level above where Collier ended at the same age is sort of assinine, really.

    Any prospect list that has Joe Savery at 7 is either an indictment on the organization’s other prospects or on the list itself. I’m leaning towards the former.

    Again, commend the effort and the time spent compiling this list. Just, objectively, think it’s flawed.

  • Posts: 0 hamels' left hand

    Damn, ‘I’m leaning towards the LATTER.’ My soapbox is flawed too.

  • Posts: 0 Kevin

    Gose is physically mature compared to Collier. Gose simply came into his body sooner than Collier. When Collier grows into his body…oh, my!

    No offense to Gose or his parents, but he is clearly an immature male who was not made taught to personal responsibility and to be accountable for his actions. He knows what face to put on at the right time – A Slick Dude! Don’t get me wrong, I like the kid, but fun personalities possessing a winning smile does not make a man.
    His upbringing will catch up to him sooner or later. Hopefully the coaches are able to give him what his parents did not.

    Collier was not spoild by his parents and family. He was taught personal responsibility and accountability. In addition, he has risen above personal (physical) challenges which would have ended the playing days most people. The fact that he came back from such adversity in HS and still ended up being selected in the 1st round (34) is a testament to how strong this kid is…

    Gose has major potential to shine and do great things – but only if he learns the world doesn’t revolve around his hind quarters. Hopefully his off the field behavior will not catch up to him.

    Collier only has to keep clear of knuckleheads who don’t know or understand their opportunity before them…if he can keep from the BS off the field, he will shine on the field.

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