Phillies' Adam Morgan Vaults To Double-A In Debut





CLEARWATER, Fla.—The Phillies traded righthanders Vance Worley and Trevor May to the Twins for center fielder Ben Revere because they believe they have starting pitching depth in the upper levels of the system.

That group of projectable starters includes righties Jonathan Pettibone and Ethan Martin and lefties Jesse Biddle and Adam Morgan.

Pettibone and Martin are in big league camp as members of the 40-man roster. Morgan was there, too, but as a non-roster invitee on the heels of an eye-opening 2012 campaign. Biddle heads to minor league camp, and after that probably Double-A Reading.

A third-round selection out of Alabama in 2011, Morgan pitched his way to Double-A in his full-season debut. Phillies officials believe the Marietta, Ga., native could be a quick riser.

"He shows pretty good feel on the mound," big league pitching coach Rich Dubee said. "He commands his fastball to both sides. He has a very good changeup.

"The reports on him have been very solid. This is a good experience for him."

Morgan, 23, had three different pitching coaches at Alabama and admits that he had peaks and valleys. He ran up a 6.18 ERA as a rotation regular (18 starts) in 2010, then went just 5-7, 4.64 in 16 starts as a junior the next season.

Pitching for high Class A Clearwater and Reading last season, Morgan went 8-11, 3.35, allowing 137 hits and 39 walks in 159 innings while striking out a system-best 169 batters.

"His stuff has gotten better in pro ball," farm director Joe Jordan said. "I've seen him beat teams with a fastball/slider combination and a changeup/breaking ball combination. That's a quality you don't see in a lot of young pitchers."

Morgan made just six starts at Double-A, so he probably will head back there to begin the season as he works toward Triple-A. Team officials believe he has a bright future, regardless of where he pitches.

"Getting to Double-A last year was exciting," Morgan said. "My goal is to stay consistent and keep improving."

PHIL-UPS

• The Phillies and the city of Clearwater opened a new 20,000-square-foot indoor facility at the minor league complex. It features a 5,000-square-foot weight room, video and training rooms, six indoor batting cages and pitcher's mounds.

• The Phillies released veteran reliever Juan Cruz from his minor league contract so he could pursue other opportunities.