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Posts Tagged ‘Pounder’

PN Interview: First Base Prospect Art Charles

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, April 24, 2013 11:30 AM Comments: 0

Art Charles, photo- Jay Floyd

Acquired by the Phillies during spring training in a trade with Toronto, first baseman Art Charles welcomed the change and is happy to be a part of the Phils organization.  The six-foot-six 225 pounder was originally drafted by the Blue Jays in the 20th round in 2010 out of Bakersfield College.  Now, the 22-year-old bats cleanup for Class A Lakewood BlueClaws.

Through 19 games this season, Charles is batting .275 with five doubles, two homers and 12 RBI.

Charles was named the Phillies minor league player of the week for April 15th through the 21st, as he batted .423 with a home run and six RBI in seven games played. 

I recently spoke with Art about the trade, his work to improve his hitting approach and plenty more.  Read ahead for that full interview.

- During spring training, of course, your were swapped by the Blue Jays for reliever Michael Schwimer.  How were you notified of the deal and what was your reaction?

I had talked to the Blue Jays prior and they had scheduled me for a doctors appointment, I think it was a check up, they have us do our physicals and what not, this is on Saturday.  And I was like, “Alright, sounds good.  I’ll be able to get a ride over to the doctors appointment and what not.”  And then later on, maybe like three, four hours later, I got called and notified of the trade, so I was a little shocked.  Like, “Oh, I just talked to you guys…”  So, it was kind of shocking.  And didn’t know all the details about the trade and they kind of told me a little about it and after a while I realized that this was a good thing.  This is a good thing for me and my career and it’s just one of those experiences you go through that’s kind of a shocker at first, then as it sinks in, you start thinking about it and it kind of mellows out a little bit. 

- It must have been an easy transition for you to go from Dunedin to nearby Clearwater, though, right?

Yeah, it wasn’t too far away.  I think it’s like ten minutes.  It wasn’t like I was going three hours away.  I knew the area still and I remembered seeing some of the Phillies guys walking around and stuff.  It wasn’t a bad transition at all and they made me feel at home. Continue reading PN Interview: First Base Prospect Art Charles

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PN Interview: Top 2011 Draft Pick Larry Greene Jr.

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sat, April 20, 2013 08:00 AM Comments: 4

LarryGreeneJr

Larry Greene Jr., image- Jay Floyd

Left fielder Larry Greene Jr. was selected by the Phillies in the supplementary round of the 2011 draft (39th overall) out of Berrien County High School (GA).  The 6-foot 235-pounder signed late that season and spent some time with the Florida Instructional League team.  He made his official regular season debut last year with the short-season Williamsport Crosscutters, where he batted .272 with 22 doubles, two homers and 26 RBI in 70 games.

This season, citing concern over Greene’s weight, the Phillies kept him in extended spring training to open the season.  However, the 20-year-old was added to the Class A Lakewood roster this week, as his fitness is clearly headed in the right direction.

I spoke with Larry, who is 0-for-5 with five strike outs and two walks through his first two games with the BlueClaws, on Friday about his draft process, his weight, his family and plenty more.  Read ahead for that full interview.

-So, you got the call this week to join this BlueClaws club.  What do you think of the facilities in Lakewood and the town here thus far?

I like it.  It’s beautiful here. I mean, the whole team welcomed me with open arms.  It’s a lot of my buddies and it feels good to join them. Continue reading PN Interview: Top 2011 Draft Pick Larry Greene Jr.

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Weekly Minor League Wrap Up, 4/17/13

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, April 17, 2013 11:00 AM Comments: 1

It’s time, once again, for our weekly glance around the Phillies’ developmental ranks, taking a look a some exceptional performers and those that have raised some eyebrows for different reasons.

Class A Lakewood
hot list-

Art Charles, photo- Jay Floyd

First baseman Art Charles, who was acquired from Toronto this spring in the Michael Schwimer trade, has hit in six straight games, going 9-for-22 (.409 avg) with two doubles, two homers and seven RBI in that stretch. Overall, the lefty batting 22-year-old is hitting .239 in 13 games this season.

Righty reliever Nic Hanson, who celebrated his 21st birthday this week, has struck out 10 batters while walking two in eight innings of work through three appearances. Additionally, he has a save and a 3.38 ERA during that time as well. The six-foot-seven 210-pounder was drafted by the Phils in the 16th round last year out of Golden West College.

Lakewood red flags-

OF Brian Pointer is batting .174 this season, despite a current three-game hitting streak. The lefty batting 21-year-old was the Phillies’ 28th round draft pick in 2010.

17-year-old outfielder Carlos Tocci, the youngest player in the South Atlantic League, has posted a .186 batting average with one extra-base hit (a double) in 12 contests this season. The right-handed hitting Venezuelan batted .278 with two doubles in 38 games last season with the Gulf Coast League Phillies. Continue reading Weekly Minor League Wrap Up, 4/17/13

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PN Interview: 3B Prospect Mitch Walding

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, April 12, 2013 08:00 AM Comments: 0

MitchWalding2

Lakewood 3B Mitch Walding, photo- Jay Floyd

Phillies 5th round draft choice from 2011, Mitch Walding, is off to a solid start to the  regular season this year with the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws.  Walding, a 3rd baseman, has gone 9-for-28 (.321 avg) with two doubles and six RBI through eight games thus far against South Atlantic League competition.

The lefty batting Lodi, CA native made his pro debut last season with the short-season Class A Williamsport Crosscutters, posting a .233 batting average along with 10 doubles, three triples, a homer and 31 RBI in 60 games.

After playing in the Florida Instructional League last year as well, the six-foot-three 190-pounder came into spring training this year, ready to make an impact and made his full season team debut last week.

I spoke with the 20-year-old Walding recently about his his draft experience, his time as a pro thus far and plenty more.  Read ahead to check out the full interview.

- In 2011, you were a 5th round draft pick.  I just wanted to get you to take me through your draft experience and talk about how you were tracking the draft, how did you learn the Phillies drafted you and how did you celebrate?

I was at my grandmother’s house with all my family and friends.  I knew I wasn’t probably gonna go the first day, I knew I was gonna go anywhere from four to, anywhere to round 15. We were just kind of sitting there and waiting and we came down and I didn’t really think I was gonna get picked that day, ’cause I was the last pick of that day, or whatever, on TV, and all of a sudden it kind of just happened. They called my name and my whole family was excited and kind of jumping around. Everyone was stoked. It was a great time. You can’t really explain it. It was a great time. Everyone was full of excitement. Continue reading PN Interview: 3B Prospect Mitch Walding

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Consistency the Main Goal for Returning BlueClaws

Posted by Jay Floyd, Thu, April 04, 2013 09:00 AM Comments: 0

The Class A Lakewood BlueClaws’ opening day roster is loaded with young talent.  Highly regarded prospects like Carlos Tocci, Shane Watson, Roman Quinn and Mitch Walding are all set to make their full season Class A debuts as the season gets rolling on Thursday evening at FirstEnergy Park.  And while those names are among the ones that will draw the largest amount of attention in the early going and, possibly, through much of the season, it could very well be the returning players, one that didn’t have noteworthy debuts with Lakewood last year, that could be the difference makers in the standings.

A trio of offensive players entering their second seasons with Lakewood are back to rectify any shortcoming they displayed during their previous stints with the team.  Corner infielder Willie Carmona, middle infielder Tyler Greene and outfielder Brian Pointer feel that any necessary adjustments have been made and improvements will show in their results this season.

Carmona, a 22-year-old, was selected in the 11th round out of Stony Brook University last June. After debuting as a pro, the six-foot 230-pounder got off to a very hot start, posting a .348 average, as he laced five doubles, three triples and two homers while knocking in 20 runs in 25 games with the Gulf Coast League Phillies before making the jump up two levels to Lakewood. As a member of the BlueClaws, playing most of his games as a designated hitter, a sizzling Carmona cooled off, batting .221 with five doubles and two home runs while plating 10 runners in 27 contests.

The confidence of the Hempstead, NY native didn’t suffer, as he performed well throughout spring training and is prepared to roll that into a strong regular season.

“I’m gonna be more consistent.  Last year, I got here with about a month remaining (in the regular season) and I kind of struggled.  So, I’m trying to just get better each and every day and work harder,” Carmona stated. Continue reading Consistency the Main Goal for Returning BlueClaws

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PN Interview: Top 2012 Draft Pick Shane Watson

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, April 03, 2013 08:00 AM Comments: 3

Phillies top 2012 draft pick Shane Watson, photo- Jay Floyd

Last season’s top Phillies draft choice, righty pitcher Shane Watson is set to kick off the new season as a member of the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws.  Taken 40th overall, the six-foot-four 200-pounder signed for nearly $1.3 million and made his pro debut with the Gulf Coast League Phillies, posting a 1.29 ERA over five outings late last summer.

After spending time in the fall instructional league, the 19-year-old will be among a young group of hurlers hoping to take the BlueClaws back to the top of the South Atlantic League in 2013.

At Tuesday’s open practice in Lakewood, I spoke with Shane, about his draft experience, his offerings on the mound, his transition into the professional ranks and plenty more.  Read ahead for that full interview.

- Shane, last year you were selected in the first round, 40th overall…I wanted to talk with you and just learn what your draft experience was like.  How did you track it and how did you celebrate once you learned you were picked by the Phillies?

It was a pretty incredible feeling.  I couldn’t really describe how it felt, but I was hoping I would go fairly early on draft day and it kind of just happened and I can’t really describe how it felt to hear my name on TV, but it was fun. It was a once in a lifetime chance.

- So, is that something you were watching live?  You know, who were you watching with when it happened?

I was at my grandma’s house watching live.  Actually, I invited about six friends over.  It ended up being, like, a 45, 50 people affair, way too many people, but when my name was called, everyone went crazy.  Air horns and stuff.  It was fun!

- That sounds pretty big.  Now, you spent some time as a pro last year pitching in five games, seven innings pitched, then spending time at instructs.  What did you take out of your brief time as a pro last year that you’re going to bring into this year?

It was a humbling experience.  I thought I was good and big in high school, but once you come out here, you’re just another player, so you’ve got to just earn your keep and work hard pretty much. Continue reading PN Interview: Top 2012 Draft Pick Shane Watson

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Spring Wrap Up Interview: RHP Tyler Knigge

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, March 31, 2013 04:00 PM Comments: 0

As minor leaguers break camp and three quarters of the teams head north to their full season destinations, I had the opportunity to speak with righty hurler Tyler Knigge.

The Phils’ 12th round draft selection in 2010, took big strides last year, as he posted a 4-1 record, nine saves and a 0.60 ERA in 34 outings for Class A Advanced Clearwater, en route to becoming a Florida State League All-Star.  The six-foot-three 225-pounder then earned a promotion to Double-A, where he tallied a 2.92 ERA with no decisions and two saves in 21 appearances for Reading.  Additionally, Knigge, who sports a fastball that is regularly clocked in the mid-90′s, averaged 9.09 K/9 at the two levels.  He went on to pitcher with Peoria in the Arizona Fall League last year as well.

This weekend, Tyler offered some quick thoughts on his preseason, his assignment to begin the regular season with Reading and more.  Read ahead to check out the interview.

- How has your spring gone?  Thoughts on how you’ve progressed physically? Any spring training goals met?

My spring has gone well. Had my ups and downs but that’s what spring training is for. Fixing the kinks. Physically, I know I’ve gotten stronger. That’s my goal and I will continue working towards it. Continue reading Spring Wrap Up Interview: RHP Tyler Knigge

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The Cody Chronicles, Vol. 6: Asche Ready to Begin 2013 Season

Posted by Jay Floyd, Tue, March 26, 2013 08:00 AM Comments: 1

Asche with Reading in 2012, Image- Jay Floyd

As the exhibition schedule winds down, we check in one last time with Phillies third base prospect Cody Asche, who has been offering weekly thoughts directly from inside spring training in Clearwater, FL.

A 4th round draft selection in 2011 out of the University of Nebraska, Asche has been a fast rising prospect since joining the Phils organization. Last year, the 22-year-old, in his first full professional season, tallied a .324 batting average with 12 homers, 72 RBI and 11 stolen bases in 130 combined games with Class A Advanced Clearwater and Double-A Reading. Asche followed up that campaign with a .281/.343/.438 line with Peoria in the Arizona Fall League. This spring the six-foot-one 180-pounder went 5-for-14 (.357 average) with two doubles in eight Grapefruit League contests this year, before being reassigned to minor league camp.

In the latest edition of The Cody Chronicles, Asche talks about the potential of beginning the season with Triple-A Lehigh Valley IronPigs, playing on developmental teams located in the heart of big league Phillies territory, his teammate and roommate Adam Morgan as well as plenty more. Read ahead for Cody’s thoughts.

On the possibility of starting the season at the Triple-A level, having entered the final week of spring games playing with the group that will come north as the Lehigh Valley IronPigs…

I don’t think anything’s set in stone. Anything can happen. So, I’ll just keep showing up and doing my work and keep playing hard until we get those final assignments. You can’t really assume anything at this point when, there’s still a lot of changes that could probably be made. Continue reading The Cody Chronicles, Vol. 6: Asche Ready to Begin 2013 Season

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Prospect Nation 2013: #1 LHP Jesse Biddle

Posted by Jay Floyd, Mon, March 11, 2013 07:30 AM Comments: 0

Jesse Biddle is the Phillies’ number 1 prospect, Photo- Jay Floyd

Left-handed pitching prospect Jesse Biddle redefines homegrown talent. Born and bred as a Phillies fan in the Philadelphia region, Biddle’s childhood dreams came true in 2010, when he was selected 27th overall in that year’s amateur draft by the Phils. Since then, he’s been a steadily rising prospect and on an ascent toward the highest levels of the game.

Upon signing his first pro contract, Biddle quickly made his minor league debut, beginning his journey toward donning the home uniform of the team he cheered on from the seats of Citizens Bank Park all throughout his teenage years. The graduate of Germantown Friends School in Philadelphia combined to sport a 4-1 record with a 3.92 ERA and a .241 batting average against in 12 starts with the rookie level Gulf Coast League Phillies and the short-season Class A Williamsport Crosscutters in 2010.

The following year, Biddle became an All-Star in the Class A South Atlantic League as a member of the Lakewood BlueClaws. As the team’s most dependable starter through much of the season, Biddle posted a 7-8 record with a 2.98 ERA in 25 games (24 starts) and notched 124 strike outs in 133 innings pitched. In addition, he held opponents to a .219 batting average.

In 2012, Biddle had a very good season with the Class A Advanced Clearwater Threshers, putting together a 10-6 record with a 3.22 ERA, a 9.53 K/9 mark and a .237 batting average against. Continue reading Prospect Nation 2013: #1 LHP Jesse Biddle

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Prospect Nation 2013: #2 LHP Adam Morgan

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sat, March 09, 2013 11:00 AM Comments: 0

Lefty hurler Adam Morgan progressed more than any other Phillies prospect over the past year.  Drafted in the third round in 2011 out of the University of Alabama, Morgan quickly made an impact in the Phils’ system upon debuting as a pro, and only sped up his progress last season when he became a force on the pitching mound.

After posting a 3-3 record with a 2.01 ERA in 11 starts in his debut professional season as a member of the short-season Class A Williamsport Crosscutters, Morgan skipped full season A level Lakewood and began the 2012 season in the Florida State League. With the Class A Advanced Clearwater Threshers, Morgan tallied a 4-10 record with a 3.29 ERA and was named a mid-season All-Star.

His win-loss record certainly doesn’t accurately convey the true effort that Morgan put forth with the Threshers, as he held opponents to a .227 batting average while averaging 10.24 K/9, posting a 1.10 WHIP and sporting a 2.62 SIERA in 21 games (20 starts).

In July, the six-foot-one 195-pounder posted a 1.29 ERA in five July starts and was named as the Phillies’ minor league pitcher of the month. Continue reading Prospect Nation 2013: #2 LHP Adam Morgan

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