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Rookie Leagues

Phillies Prospects Biddle & Schwimer Ready for Spring

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, February 17, 2012 08:36 AM Comments: 0

Jesse Biddle.

Michael Schwimer.

Top Phillies pitching prospects Jesse Biddle and Michael Schwimer joined Mike Gill on 97.3 ESPN FM today at the same time and talk about getting ready for Spring Training in Clearwater.

The guys talk about what’s to come for them and trying to open some eyes during Spring Training. Biddle talks about growing up a Phillies fan and striving to play for his hometown club. Schwimer chimes in on the competitive nature of Biddle and where he hopes to be this season.

It’s a great interview if you want to learn more about some of our top players in the system.

LISTEN HERE TO THE INTERVIEW WITH BIDDLE AND SCHWIMER

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Prospect Nation 2012: #14 OF Larry Greene Jr.

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sat, February 11, 2012 10:11 AM Comments: 5

The Phillies’ top draft pick from 2011, Larry Greene Jr., has the type of power that already has many within the organization and around baseball buzzing. After inking his first professional contract close to the signing deadline last year, Greene Jr. has yet to play in his first organized professional contest. The power hitting outfielder from Berrien County High School in Georgia is expected to make his pro debut in just a few short months.

Greene Jr., who got a $1 million signing bonus, worked out with the Gulf Coast League Phillies late in the season last year and spent some time at the Florida Instructional League as well. Despite sitting out with a groin injury, the lefty batting slugger was able to take in plenty of batting practice and put himself on display for the brass in attendance to see many of their newly drafted prospects. Continue reading Prospect Nation 2012: #14 OF Larry Greene Jr.

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Phillies Nation Interview: Roman Quinn

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, February 05, 2012 08:00 AM Comments: 2

Recently I had the opportunity to speak with the Phillies’ 2nd round selection from the 2011 draft, shortstop Roman Quinn. The 18-year-old signed late and did not play in any official professional games last year, but did participate in work outs with the Gulf Coast League Phillies and spent time in the Florida Instructional League.

Roman is a 5-foot-10-inch tall 170-pound switch-hitting shortstop that is highly praised for his speed and his adaptability. The exciting young talent is primed for a big year, potentially with the Class A short-season Williamsport Crosscutters.

I asked Roman about various topics including his friendship with 1st round draft pick Larry Greene Jr., his off-season thus far and plenty more. Check out the full interview below. Continue reading Phillies Nation Interview: Roman Quinn

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Sandberg Returning as Lehigh Valley Manager

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, November 21, 2011 02:30 PM Comments: 8

In a press release from the Phillies, they announced that Ryne Sandberg will return to the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs as manager.

I’m happy they were able to bring back Sandberg, as he’s succeeded at basically every level as both a player and coach. It’s a shame for him that he was unable to secure a position as a manager in the majors after another great season in 2011, however, there will be plenty of opportunities in the future.

Former Phillies Andy Tracy and Aaron Fultz and newcomers Andy Abad and Lino Connell have been added to the Phillies’ player development staff, Joe Jordan, Director, Player Development, announced today.  The staff also includes 21 returning members.

At triple-A Lehigh Valley, the entire staff of manager Ryne Sandberg, coach Sal Rende and pitching coach Rod Nichols will return.  Sandberg, a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, is back for his second season after leading the IronPigs to their first playoff appearance in club history in 2011.  Rende will enter his ninth season with the Phillies and second straight at Lehigh Valley, while Nichols returns for his 13th year in the organization and eighth at triple-A.

Continue reading Sandberg Returning as Lehigh Valley Manager

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Parent to White Sox, Greene Shut Down

Posted by Jay Floyd, Mon, October 10, 2011 07:00 PM Comments: 0

According to ESPNChicago, Mark Parent is headed to Chicago to be the new bench coach of the White Sox, beside new manager Robin Ventura, who was named as the replacement for the departed Ozzie Guillen, who parted ways with the team after 8 seasons.

Parent, a former big league catcher, had been a manager in the Phillies developmental system for each of the past two seasons.  In 2010 he led the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws to their second straight South Atlantic League championship.  And in 2011, he was at the helm for the playoff bound Double A Reading Phillies.

The Phillies recently granted the White Sox permission to speak with Parent about their coaching vacancy.

Parent played 13 seasons in the Majors, spending time with Philadelphia, San Diego, Texas, Baltimore, Detroit and the Chicago Cubs.

Another former Phillie, Jeff Manto, is also rumored to a candidate to join the White Sox coaching staff. Continue reading Parent to White Sox, Greene Shut Down

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Florida Instructional League Gets Underway

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, September 21, 2011 07:30 AM Comments: 0

On Monday, the annual Florida Instructional League got underway for Phillies minor leaguers at the team’s spring training home in Clearwater. Instructs, as they are commonly known, is a month-long off-season league, generally consisting of recently drafted players, those that missed time due to injury, or those that participated in a short-season league, allowing those individuals to refine their skills or add innings/at bats to their season. It also serves as an opportunity for a greater number developmental coaches and managers to see newly signed players in action.

Below is a full roster of Phillies minor league players and coaches in attendance for the instructional league.

Pitchers: Gabriel Arias, Jesse Biddle, James Birmingham, Lisalberto Bonilla (pictured), Ranfi Casimiro, Lendy Castillo, Brody Colvin, Jesen Dygestile-Therrien, Perci Garner, Kenneth Giles, Steven Inch, Ulises Joaquin, Jay Johnson, Colin Kleven, Ervis Manzanillo, Lino Martinez, Adam Morgan, Hector Neris, Ramon Oviedo, J.C. Ramirez, Yacksel Rios, Braden Shull, Ethan Stewart, Josh Warner, Austin Wright.

Catchers: Francisco Diaz, Logan Moore, Chace Numata, Cameron Rupp, Bob Stumpo

Continue reading Florida Instructional League Gets Underway

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Schwimer Gets the Call

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, August 17, 2011 08:00 AM Comments: 11

UPDATE, 2:40 pm: Here is the official press release from the Phillies on the moves made today:

Third baseman Placido Polanco was placed on the disabled list, retroactive to August 7, with a sports hernia, the Phillies announced today.  To fill his spot on the 25-man roster, the Phillies selected the contract of right-hander Michael Schwimer from triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Polanco, 35, last appeared for the Phillies in their game at San Francisco on August 6 and was diagnosed with a sports hernia on August 8.  This is the second disabled list stint this season for Polanco who missed 19 games in July due to lower back inflammation.  Polanco, a 2011 National League All-Star, was hitting .275 with four home runs and 40 RBI in 89 games for the Phillies this season.

Schwimer, 25, has gone 9-1 with 10 saves and a 1.88 ERA in 46 appearances for Lehigh Valley this season.  An International League All-Star in 2011, Schwimer has 86 strikeouts in 67.0 innings (11.55 SO/9.0 IP) and has held opponents to a .202 batting average.

To make room for Schwimer on the 40-man roster, right-hander Joe Blanton (right elbow inflammation) was transferred to the 60-day disabled list.

Schwimer will wear #39.

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Right-handed reliever Michael Schwimer is set to join the Phillies on Wednesday. The 14th round selection out of the 2008 amateur draft, has been called up by the big club to fill the void left when Placido Polanco was placed on the disabled list on Tuesday with a sports hernia.

Through 46 games with the Triple A Lehigh Valley IronPigs this season, the University of Virginia graduate posted a 9-1 record with 10 saves and a 1.88 ERA while 86 striking out in 67 innings pitched.

Schwimer, a 6-foot-8-inch 250-pounder, has been ready for the step upward for a lengthy stretch. An All-star this season, Schwimer has out-shined many of his IronPigs teammates, only to see those players get called up time and time again. Now, Schwimer’s chance has finally arrived and, if you ask the man himself, he’s been ready for this opportunity for quite a while.

In a recent exclusive interview, Schwimer spoke of his hopes of earning a spot with the big club.

“I absolutely feel like I’m ready,” Schwimer stated. “I feel like I’ve been ready for a while, but…it doesn’t matter how I feel. It matters how the scouts feel and the talent evaluators feel and our GM feels. So, I hope they feel that way and I’m just gonna keep pitching to the best of my ability and hopefully that day comes soon.” Continue reading Schwimer Gets the Call

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Tryout Signee Rice Is Living The Dream

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, August 05, 2011 11:00 AM Comments: 3

From his time as a star with Washington Township High School, through his years of college, Bill Rice would keep tabs on the annual Major League Baseball draft. He never heard his name called. The Sewell, NJ native never gave up hope, however and forced a professional team to take a close look at him when he attended an open tryout hosted by the Phillies in Lakewood last summer. The result of that was everything he hoped for.

The tryout had a large turnout. The lefty hitting Rice, who played at Gloucester County College prior to transferring to the University of South Carolina-Aiken, had low expectations going in, but felt that an opportunity to be seen by professional talent evaluators couldn’t be a bad thing.

Following the audition, Rice said there was a stretch when he didn’t hear anything from the Phillies and he began to doubt there ever would be. Rice thought the club would never reach out to him. However, roughly three weeks later, a phone call from the Phils’ assistant director of minor league operations proved his suspicions wrong.

“Steve Noworyta called me and said, ‘I think we’re gonna bring you on board’, and I was a little shocked. I didn’t really get it. At first it didn’t sink in. I was stunned. It didn’t really hit me till two days later,” Rice said. Continue reading Tryout Signee Rice Is Living The Dream

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Phils Prospect Malcolm Sent Home For Misconduct

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, April 22, 2011 05:37 PM Comments: 0

Stephen Malcolm, the Phillies’ 8th round draft pick in last year’s MLB amateur draft, has been sent home from extended spring training by the Phillies.

The situation is described as a suspension based on a violation of team rules related to alcohol consumption, according to a source. Malcolm, who turned 21-years-old earlier this month, remains under contract with Philadelphia and hasn’t been in Clearwater, at the organization’s training facility, since the punishment was handed down roughly two weeks ago.

The 6-feet tall, 170-pound shortstop signed with the Phillies for a reported $125,000 last summer after being selected out of San Joaquin Delta Community College in California.

Malcolm made his professional debut last season with the Gulf Coast League Phillies. In 27 games, Malcolm posted a .253 batting average with 3 doubles, 10 RBI and 7 steals.

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Jay Floyd is PhilliesNation’s minor league insider.  You can check out more content from Jay by visiting his site, PhoulBallz.com.

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Prospect Aaron Altherr Interview

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, April 15, 2011 09:01 AM Comments: 0

After splitting his second season of professional baseball with the Gulf Coast League Phillies and the Williamsport Crosscutters, outfielder Aaron Altherr is already turning heads and moving up the Phillies prospect rankings at a fast pace. A 9th round selection in the 2009 draft, the 20-year-old Altherr is known to be a contact hitter and an outfielder with terrific range.

The right-handed hitting Altherr debuted with the Gulf Coast League Phillies after signing his first professional contract in 2009 and batted .214 with 1 HR, 11 RBI and 6 steals in 28 games. In 1 less game played in the GCL this past season, Altherr showed improvement and posted a .304 batting average with 1 HR, 15 RBI and 10 steals. He was promoted to Williamsport on July 22nd.

With the short-season Crosscutters of the New York-Penn League, Altherr continued a strong season with a .287 average, 7 doubles, 3 triples, 10 RBI and 2 steals in 28 games.

Now playing with the Class A level Lakewood BlueClaws in the South Atlantic League this season, Altherr has big aspirations to continue his progression and to help the club make a run for a third consecutive league title.

I spoke with Altherr this week about his goals for this year, his draft experience, his playing style and much more. Use the media player below to listen to the full interview.

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Jay Floyd is PhilliesNation’s minor league insider. To check out more from Jay, visit his site, PhoulBallz.com.

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