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PhoulBallz Podcast Episode 73: Matt Imhof Interview

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, December 12, 2014 06:00 PM Comments: 0

On the 73rd edition of the PhoulBallz Minor League Podcast Tug and Jay are joined by lefty pitching prospect Matt Imhof, who was the Phillies’ 2nd round draft choice this year. Additionally, the guys talk about the Phils’ rebuild mode kicked off by the team trading former National League MVP Jimmy Rollins and what Rollins’, as well as other core team members’, places in team history should be.   Wondering if Cole Hamels is next to go and the organization’s cranky fan base are also a topics of discussion.

Use the media player below to stream the full episode, or simply download it by clicking HERE.

You can also check out previous episodes and subscribe on iTunes.

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Phillies nab two minor league hurlers in return for Rollins

Posted by Jay Floyd, Thu, December 11, 2014 03:59 PM Comments: 11

At long last, it was announced on Thursday what the Phillies would obtain in return for franchise all-time hits leader Jimmy Rollins.  Righty pitcher Zach Eflin and lefty Tom Windle are the players headed east.

On Wednesday, news leaked that the Phillies and Dodgers agreed on a deal for the three-time All-Star and 2007 National League most valuable player, Rollins, but it wasn’t know what the Phils would get in the swap for close to 24 hours.

The 20-year-old Eflin was the Padres’ first round draft choice (33rd overall) in 2012 and had just been acquired from San Diego in the deal for Matt Kemp.  With Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore this year, Eflin, who stands six-foot-four and weighs 200 pounds, tallied a 10-7 record along with a 3.80 ERA and a 6.5 K/9 mark in 24 starts.

Scouts like Eflin’s excellent change up and his fastball sits in the low 90′s with potential to increase.  His pitch menu also includes a slider. Continue reading Phillies nab two minor league hurlers in return for Rollins

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Phils add two, lose three in Rule 5 draft

Posted by Jay Floyd, Thu, December 11, 2014 01:30 PM Comments: 8

HerreraIn the major league portion of the yearly Rule 5 draft that took place on Thursday morning at the MLB Winter Meetings, the Phillies selected 2B/SS Odubel Herrera from the Texas Rangers and lefty hurler Andy Oliver from the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Each player must remain on the Phillies’ big league roster for the entire 2015 season or would have to be offered back to the team they were selected from.

Last season combined at Class A Advanced and Double-A in the minors, the 22-year-old posted a .315/.383/.388 slash line with 21 steals in 125 games.  He has played 135 of his 574 pro games at the position that is of most concern with the reported trade of Jimmy Rollins, shortstop.  Defensively, it is said that Herrera has some progress to make with the glove, but with 10 games played in the outfield last year, he touts the versatility that enhances his value as a bench player, if the Phils are to keep him on their roster next year.

Currently playing in the Venezuelan Winter League, 5-foot-11 lefty batter sports a league-best .374 batting average with a .986 OPS in 42 games with La Guaira, the same team that Phils pitching prospects Ethan Martin and Mike Nesseth play for.

Oliver, who touts questionable control (7.6 BB/9 in 77 games the past two seasons at Triple-A Indianapolis), fills a void in a collection of lefties competing for a big league spot in spring traning next year after the dealing of Antonio Bastardo.

As a reliever last year, the 27-year-old, who has big league experience with the Tigers, tallied a 3-4 record with 13 saves and a 2.53 ERA and a .157 BAA. Continue reading Phils add two, lose three in Rule 5 draft

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2014 Phillies Rule 5 Draft Primer

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, December 10, 2014 07:45 AM Comments: 1

Rule5The MLB Winter Meetings haven’t resulted in much excitement for Phillies fans thus far, but Thursday’s Rule 5 draft could have some bearing on the team’s near future, if the Phils have their way.

Phillies Rule 5 selections in recent years that ended up being returned to their original teams include Ender Inciarte (2012) and Kevin Munson (2013).  Players that remained with the Phils for the entire following season in recent years include Michael Martinez (2010) and David Herndon (2009).

Righty hurler Seth Rosin was taken from the Phillies in last December’s Rule 5 draft and was returned to the organization after officially being property of three different teams in the interim time.

Players are eligible for selection in the Rule 5 draft when they are not on their major league organization’s 40 man roster and 1) were signed to a contract at age 19 or older and have been in that organization for four years, OR 2) were signed at age 18 or younger and have been in that organization for five years. Continue reading 2014 Phillies Rule 5 Draft Primer

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All the latest from the Winter Meetings

Posted by Jay Floyd, Tue, December 09, 2014 09:58 AM Comments: 4

Links below for all the key goings-on out in San Diego at the MLB Winter Meetings thus far…

-Phillies Nation’s Corey Seidman writes for CSN that the free agent starting pitcher market is of great interest to the Phils and should impact the trade market for lefty Cole Hamels.

-Interim team president Pat Gillick spoke of the rebuilding process and getting the roster younger.  He also discussed general manager Ruben Amaro Jr, saying he has Amaro’s back.

-Amaro reportedly had deals available to make that did not benefit the Phillies enough to make any of them happen.

-The Phils’ GM also stated that lefty Cliff Lee’s elbow is progressing well and that he is expected to be ready for spring training.

-Jayson Stark stated that the Orioles could be a suitor for OF Marlon Byrd (more here).

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Off-season league updates: Hernandez heats up

Posted by Jay Floyd, Mon, December 08, 2014 07:00 AM Comments: 0

Once again, we’re back with another weekly rundown of how Phillies players are performing in fall and winter leagues around the globe. Read ahead for all the latest stats and updates.

Venezuelan Winter League-

CesarHernandez

Cesar Hernandez, image- Jay Floyd

After going 17-for-37 (.459 avg) in his last nine games, infielder Cesar Hernandez is batting .356 with five doubles, 13 RBI and three stolen bases for Lara. In 66 games with the Phillies this year, the 24-year-old switch-hitter batted .237 with a homer, four RBI and a stolen base.

Catcher Gabriel Lino is batting .265 with five doubles, four RBI in 19 games for Lara. The 21-year-old, who was acquired from Baltimore in the 2012 Jim Thome trade, played in 90 combined games with Class A Lakewood and Class A Advanced Clearwater this year, posting a combined .215 average with five home runs and 34 RBI.

In 13 appearances (six starts) with Lara, lefty hurler Cesar Jimenez has a 2-4 record with a 3.48 ERA while striking out 29 and walking eight in 31 innings of work. The 30-year-old posted a 1.69 ERA in 16 big league games with the Phillies this year.

After a 0-for-4 day on Sunday, shortstop Freddy Galvis is batting .246 with seven doubles, a triple, a homer and nine RBI. In 43 big league contests this year, the 25-year-old switch-hitter batted .176 with four home runs and 12 RBI.

Elvis Araujo sports a 4-0 record with a 0.61 ERA in 12 relief outings for Zulia. The 23-year-old left-hander, who was signed as a free agent this off-season, posted a 2-1 record with 11 saves, a 3.42 ERA and a 9.00 K/9 mark in 43 combined games with Class A Advanced Carolina and Double-A Akron this year. Continue reading Off-season league updates: Hernandez heats up

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Phillies off-season league updates: Altherr, Araujo, Franco, Hernandez, more

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, November 30, 2014 03:55 PM Comments: 7

Baseball never stops and neither does Phillies Nation.  It’s another weekly edition of the Phillies off-season league rundown featuring updates on players from around the globe.  Read ahead for all the info with activity through Saturday.

Venezuelan Winter League-

Aaron Altherr

Aaron Altherr, image- Jay Floyd

Aaron Altherr is done with his time in Venezuela.  The righty batting outfielder hit .286 with four home runs, 27 RBI and a stolen base in 31 games for Zulia. The 23-year-old played in two games with the big league Phillies this year. In 127 minor league games in 2014, the Phillies’ 9th round pick in 2009 posted a .237 average with 14 HR, 59 RBI and 13 stolen bases.

In 31 games with Zulia, shortstop Freddy Galvis is batting .254 with seven doubles, a triple, a homer and eight RBI. In 43 big league contests this year, the 25-year-old switch-hitter batted .176 with four home runs and 12 RBI.

Elvis Araujo sports a 2-0 record with a 0.66 ERA in 11 relief outings for Zulia. The 23-year-old left-hander posted a 2-1 record with 11 saves, a 3.42 ERA and a 9.00 K/9 mark in 43 combined games with Class A Advanced Carolina and Double-A Akron this year.

Righty pitcher Ethan Martin returned from a back injury and pitched twice in the past week for La Guaira, allowing three earned runs while striking out four and walking four in four innings of work. The 25-year-old was acquired from the Dodgers in the 2012 Shane Victorino trade.  Martin appeared in two games with the Phillies this year, allowing two earned runs in four innings.

Also for La Guaira, righty Mike Nesseth has allowed seven earned runs in 1 2/3 innings. The 26-year-old posted a 2-7 record with a save and a 5.60 ERA in 42 combined outings at Double- Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley this year. The six-foot-five 210-pound Nesseth was the Phils’ 17th round pick in 2010.

In 21 games, infielder Cesar Hernandez is batting .317 with five doubles, 12 RBI and three stolen bases.  Hot of late, Hernandez is batting .379 with eight runs scored in his last seven games.  In 66 games with the Phillies this year, the 24-year-old switch-hitter batted .237 with a homer, four RBI and a stolen base.

Catcher Gabriel Lino is batting .317 with five doubles, four RBI in 16 games for Lara. The 21-year-old, who was acquired from Baltimore in the 2012 Jim Thome trade, played in 90 combined games with Class A Lakewood and Class A Advanced Clearwater this year, posting a combined .215 average with five home runs and 34 RBI.

In nine appearances with Lara, lefty hurler Cesar Jimenez has a 2-4 record with a 3.56 ERA while striking out 29 and walking eight in 30 1/3 innings of work in 12 appearances. The 30-year-old posted a 1.69 ERA in 16 big league games with the Phillies this year. Continue reading Phillies off-season league updates: Altherr, Araujo, Franco, Hernandez, more

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Off-season League Updates: Franco slumps, Martin deals with injury

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, November 23, 2014 11:40 AM Comments: 0

It’s time once again for another weekly review of Phillies players’ performances and progress in off-season leagues around the globe.

Dominican Winter League-

MaikelFranco

Maikel Franco, image- Jay Floyd

Third baseman Maikel Franco has been in a slump lately, going 3-for-27 (.111 avg) over his last seven games.  One positive out of that is that two of his three hits during that time are home runs.  Overall in 22 games for the Gigantes, the 22-year-old is batting .239 with six homers and 21 RBI.  This year in 133 contests with Triple-A Lehigh Valley, the righty hitting Franco posted a .257 batting average with 16 home runs and 78 RBI.

Right-handed reliever Hector Neris has made 11 scoreless appearances for the Toros while striking out five and walking four in 8 2/3 innings.  The 25-year-old appeared in one game with the Phils this year, earning a win in his big league debut.

Australian Baseball League-

Power hitting outfielder Dylan Cozens has a .205 average with three homers and six RBI in 11 contests with Melbourne.  This year, with Class A Lakewood, the 20-year-old sported a .248 average with 16 home runs and 62 RBI in 132 games.  The six-foot-six 235-pounder was the Phillies’ 2nd round draft selection in 2012.

Catcher Chace Numata has tallied a .295 average with three doubles and four RBI in 12 games, also with Melbourne.  Numata missed much of the 2014 season after undergoing surgery to repair a broken hamate bone prior to the season.  The 22-year-old was the Phillies’ 14th round draft pick in 2010.

After opening his season 1-for-12, outfielder Brian Pointer has gone 11-for-34 (.324 avg).  Overall, Pointer has a .261 average with a home run and five RBI in 12 games with Perth.  In 123 games for Class A Advanced Clearwater this year, Pointer posted a .246 average with 15 homers, 53 RBI and 16 steals.  The 22-year-old lefty batter was the Phils’ 28th round pick in 2010.

Third baseman Mitch Walding is batting .220 with three doubles and eight RBI in 11 contests for Canberra.  Walding sported a .237 average with seven home runs and 55 RBI in 108 games for Class A Lakewood this year.  The 22-year-old was the Phillies’ 5th round draft choice in 2011. Continue reading Off-season League Updates: Franco slumps, Martin deals with injury

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Phils add three pitching prospects to 40-man roster

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, November 21, 2014 02:20 PM Comments: 2

JesseBiddle5

Jesse Biddle, image- Jay Floyd

It was announced on Thursday that the Phillies added three young hurlers to the big league 40-man roster.  Lefties Jesse Biddle and Adam Morgan along with righty Nefi Ogando were that trio.

Biddle has been among the Phillies’ top prospects since he was selected with their 27th overall pick in 2010.  This news is a rare positive nugget about the 23-year-old, who had a terribly difficult 2014 after missing a lengthy stretch with a a concussion, sitting out his final start of the regular season with a separate ailment and being shut down with elbow soreness after making two appearance this autumn in off-season ball in Puerto Rico.

Since debuting at the Double-A level to begin last year, Biddle hasn’t looked too sharp, posting a 10-24 record along with a 4.02 ERA in 46 appearances over the last two seasons.  Additionally, his 9.52 K/9 mark is very exciting, but the 5.14 BB/9 average (evidence of control concerns) that goes along with it is far from appealing.

Morgan, the Phillies’ 3rd round draft choice in 2011, missed the 2014 regular season after undergoing shoulder surgery last winter.  The 24-year-old has tallied a 12-22 record along with a 3.25 ERA in 56 minor league games (55 starts).  After making a few appearances at the Florida Instructional League in September, Morgan posted a 1-2 record along with a 6.61 ERA in six games in the Arizona Fall League this off-season.

Ogando, who was acquired from Boston for John McDonald last year, was also among the Phils’ representatives in the AFL and had a 1-0 record with three saves and a 3.07 ERA in 12 outings for Scottsdale.  The 25-year-old posted a 5-1 record with seven saves, a 6.27 ERA and a 9.16 K/9 mark in 48 relief appearances for Double-A Reading this year.

The additions were made to protect the players from next month’s Rule 5 draft.

The Phillies’ 40-man roster stands at 38 players.

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Phillies announce 2015 developmental coaching staffs

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, November 19, 2014 08:00 AM Comments: 0

On Tuesday, the Phillies released their planned 2015 coaching staffs for their minor league affiliates.

The Triple-A level will maintain the same group with Dave Brundage staying on as manager, Ray Burris and Sal Rende returning as pitching coach and hitting coach respectively along with Mickey Morandini coming back as bench coach.

Dusty Nerris

Dusty Wathan, image- Jay Floyd

Reading skipper Dusty Wathan will return for his fourth year with the team. Pitching coach Dave Lundquist will also be back at the Double-A level, while hitting coach Frank Cacciatore, who previously worked with the Reading team from 2008-2013 and with Clearwater in 2014, will make his return to Reading.

Class A Advanced Clearwater will have a new manager, as Greg Legg has been promoted after holding the same position with Class A Lakewood last season. 2014 Reading hitting coach Rob Ducey will work with the Threshers next year, while Steve Schrenk, who previously coached in Clearwater in 2007-2008, will be back as pitching coach after working in the Gulf Coast League last year.

Lakewood’s skipper will be Shawn Williams, who has one season as a pro manager under his belt after being hired for that gig with short-season A level Williamsport last season. Williams is the son of former big league skipper Jimy Williams. Former Phillies hurler Aaron Fultz will return to Lakewood as pitching coach after previously holding that position in 2013 and working in Williamsport last season. Nelson Prada, who managed Clearwater last season, will fill the spot of hitting coach with the BlueClaws next year. Continue reading Phillies announce 2015 developmental coaching staffs

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