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Non-Roster Invitee Preview

2013 Non-Roster Invitee Preview: Outfielders

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sun, February 03, 2013 02:02 PM Comments: 5

Mitchell has a shot, albeit a very small one, to make the Phillies out of camp in 2013. Photo: MLB.com

Unlike 2012, the Phillies enter Spring Training in 2013 with a surplus of depth in the outfield. Yet, what 2012 lacked in depth, it made up for it with talent at the top, including the now-departed Hunter Pence and Shane Victorino. The Phillies enter Spring Training with nine outfielders on their 40-man roster and two non-roster invitees competing for five spots. When the dust settles, the outfield run-off won’t be quite as exciting as last year’s battle between Juan Pierre and Scott Podsednik, which was very clearly for the 25th roster spot, but of the two names invited, one may have a chance help the Phillies out.

Jermaine Mitchell

We talked briefly about Mitchell when his December signing went under the radar. Mitchell, now 28, was ranked eighth by Baseball America among A’s prospects headed into 2012, one ahead of former Phillies prospect Michael Taylor. He earned the superlatives of Fastest Baserunner and Best Defensive Outfielder but could not impress enough in his first extended shot in Triple-A Sacramento (.252/.345/.386) to earn a stint with the A’s in 2012. A bit old for the prospect side,  Mitchell latched on with the Phillies after the A’s let him go.

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Update: Non-Rostered Invitees – Position Players

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sun, March 18, 2012 10:12 AM Comments: 3

Frandsen might have to get as creative to break camp with the Phils. Photo: AP

As Spring Training’s third calendar week comes to a close, the Phils have fourteen non-rostered invitees still in camp. On Friday, the Phils reassigned catcher Steven

Lerud of the original eight position player invitees to Minor League camp. We’ll take a look at the seven remaining position players and reassess their chances of cracking the big league club. Our original preview can be found here. The remaining seven players are listed alphabetically for your convenience.

Kevin Frandsen

What I originally wrote:

Frandsen was the Iron Pigs’ hottest hitter in 2011, hitting .321 with 3 bombs across 30 games, before being placed on the restricted list for violating MiLB’s restricted substance policy for using Ritalin to treat ADHD without a MiLB approved-waiver. Frandsen, like Orr, plays 2B and 3B, and is a slightly better Major League hitter (.243/.302/.335 v. Orr’s .254/.286/.322). Frandsen, however, rates as a below average defender at 2B and 3B and his offensive output does not separate himself far enough away from Orr to leapfrog him.

Projected Role: Starting utility infielder (2B/3B, not an oxymoron) for the Iron Pigs.

Chances of Making Phils out of Spring Training: D-. Would need to outplay Martinez and Orr and benefit from an untimely injury.

Chances of Seeing Time with Phils in 2012: D. If Frandsen has a monster season in LV, he could earn a late call-up to the big club.

What has changed?

Normally, I’d say Frandsen would benefit directly from Chase Utley’s unknown status and Placido Polanco’s jammed finger. But Frandsen has not put any pressure on the Phillies to keep his name in the conversation (.185/.303/.370 in 27 ABs). It doesn’t help his case that both Michael Martinez (.320/.393/.520) and Pete Orr (.276/.353/.379) are playing above their career averages this Spring, either. Updated Grades: No change.

Continue reading Update: Non-Rostered Invitees – Position Players

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Update: Non-Rostered Invitees – Pitchers

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sat, March 17, 2012 10:12 AM Comments: 4

Can Scott Elarton complete his comeback by winning a Major League roster spot? Photo: AP

As Spring Training’s third calendar week comes to a close, the Phils have fourteen non-rostered invitees still in camp. On Wednesday, the Phils reassigned four (Dave Bush, Austin Hyatt, Pat Misch, and BJ Rosenberg)  of the original ten pitching invitees to Minor League camp. We’ll take a look at the six remaining pitchers and reassess their chances of cracking the big league club. Our original preview can be found here. The remaining six pitchers are listed alphabetically for your convenience.

Scott Elarton

What I originally wrote:

Elarton comes with an impressive pedigree: former first-round pick out of high school. But, that was in 1994, turns 36 next Wednesday, and Elarton has not played affiliated ball in the US since he posted an 8.24 ERA in 19.2 innings for Triple-A Charlotte in 2010. I also have a sneaking suspicion either he or a family friend routinely edits his Wikipedia page based on all of the superlatives currently on it.

Projected Role: Likely released out of camp

Chances of Making Phils out of Spring Training: None

Chances of Seeing Time with Phils in 2012: Zero

What has changed?

Elarton had, by far, one of the most entertaining Wikipedia pages of all time. Perhaps at the end of the year, his comeback story may be something else to put on there. While by no means a lock to make the roster, Elarton has played his way into at least a spot at Lehigh Valley if not more with his Spring performance. His 8 IP rank 5th on the Phils out of 30 and his 0.75 WHIP is second on the Phils among starters, only behind Kendrick’s more astounding 0.48. Opponents are hitting just .185 against him. Elarton has gone from one-in-a-million to one-in-a-thousand; I would love to eat my words on what could be the Rocky Balboa out of camp. Take caution: there is a still a long way to go and plenty of righties ahead of him. Updated grades: D+ and C-.

Continue reading Update: Non-Rostered Invitees – Pitchers

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The 2012 Non-Roster Invites: Position Players

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Fri, February 17, 2012 11:40 AM Comments: 5

Juan Pierre V. Scott Podsednik

Who will win the battle for the last spot on the 25-man roster, Pierre or Podsednik? (Photos: AP)

Yesterday, we took a look at the 10 non-rostered pitchers the Phillies are inviting to Clearwater. Today, we’ll feature the 8 position players who have been invited to camp.

The storyline behind the non-pitching, non-rostered invitees to camp is a bit more exciting than that surrounding the non-rostered pitchers. A crowded, and very talented, pitching corp already existing on the 40-man roster limits the opportunities for just about all parties involved. Off the mound? It is almost guaranteed at least one of these players will break camp a member of the 25-man roster.

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The 2012 Non-Roster Invites: Pitchers

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Thu, February 16, 2012 08:00 AM Comments: 17

Austin Hyatt is the non-rostered pitcher with the best shot to crack the Phils in 2012.

It’s almost here. The grass may still be brown for most of the greater-Philadelphia region, but the sun is staying out longer. It is getting a little warmer. Baseball is almost here.

Oakland and Seattle each received a week head start on the Spring Training process reflective on their trip to Japan, where they open the season on March 28 in Tokyo. All other clubs, including our beloved Phils, will have their batteries report on Sunday.

Not everybody gets invited to big league camp: of course, the 40-man roster reports, but so do select non-rostered minor leaguers and veterans auditioning for a role on the big club. This year, the Phillies are inviting 18 non-rostered players to workout with the big club. Some figure to fit into the Phils’ immediate plans, while others have been invited to train as they prepare for the future. The majority of the players, veterans seeking another shot, will play on two-way contracts hoping they can catch fire or be the beneficiary of an injury. Or both.

Because they are reporting first, the first of two features will take a look at the pitchers the Phillies are inviting. Unfortunately for non-roster invitee pitchers reporting to Clearwater, the Phils already have 19 pitchers on the 40-man roster and a plethora of young, talented arms that will make it near impossible for any one of these pitchers to crack the roster for any period of time. Continue reading The 2012 Non-Roster Invites: Pitchers

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