Philadelphia Phillies 2020 Midseason Top 30 Prospects Update
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STATE OF THE SYSTEM
The Phillies’ minor league system isn’t as deep or top-heavy as it has been in the past, but it matches well with the MLB team’s needs. RHP Spencer Howard and 3B Alec Bohm have a chance to be impact regulars, which is much more useful for Philadelphia right now than plentiful depth. Philadelphia doesn’t have a lot of openings in the lineup or rotation for 2020, so having a pair of Top 30 prospects who are MLB ready is ideal. Adding Mick Abel and Yhoswar Garcia in the past six months is a reminder that it’s not all about the present. Both of the new additions are two of the higher-ceiling prospects to be added by any team this year, even if both are likely years away from Philadelphia.
1. Spencer Howard, RHP
The two-month layoff did nothing to slow down Howard. He showed up in summer camp and immediately looked like one of the Phillies’ best pitchers. It’s a little much to expect him to be that good in 2020, but it is reasonable to think his four-pitch mix will make him a useful rotation piece for most of this 60-game sprint.
2. Alec Bohm, 3B
Bohm is also not on the Phillies’ Opening Day roster, but the addition of the DH for the National League gives him a pretty clear path to helping the team in 2020 at both third base and DH. His defense at third has gotten a little better and gives him and the Phillies more versatility. His bat should deepen the Phillies’ lineup the day he arrives.
3. Mick Abel, RHP
Abel didn’t get to throw an official pitch this spring, but his stuff just keeps getting better. He now has a curveball to go with one of the best sliders in the draft class and a 93-95 mph fastball that can touch 99. He’s got present stuff and projection remaining that should help him as he matures.
4. Bryson Stott, SS
Stott has not been added to the Phillies’ alternate training site. He, like many 2019 college draftees, is missing a chance to get a first crack at full-season ball, but he should be able to move quickly next year. Figuring out his long-term defensive home (it will likely be somewhere in the dirt but shortstop isn’t a certainty) will be determined in 2021 or 2022.
5. Yhoswar Garcia, OF
The Phillies had to wait to sign Garcia—he was supposed to sign in 2019 but was declared ineligible to sign for a year because of a discrepancy with his listed age. The Phillies stayed on him and signed him this March. The 18-year-old has excellent tools with plus-plus speed (he runs a 6.4 60-yard dash), range in center field and exceptional athleticism. He has held his own in the Venezuelan parallel league. If his hit tool can come close to matching the rest of his tools, he’ll be an outstanding addition.
6. Francisco Morales, RHP
Like other teams, the Phillies are making sure that their players’ skills don’t atrophy during the long layoff. If Morales can figure out a way to improve his changeup while working at home during the lost 2020 season, it would help him come back in 2021 with a better shot to be a long-term starter.
7. Rafael Marchan, C
Joe Girardi loves Marchan’s advanced understanding of the difficult craft of catching. He raved about Marchan during spring training and ensured Marchan got some time catching the big league staff in intrasquad games in summer camp. He is an excellent receiver with a strong, accurate arm he does not hesitate to use. He also makes solid contact, although he’s unlikely to ever hit for much power.
8. Luis Garcia, SS
Garcia will not be able to put a better season on his resume this year, but he can use the layoff to get stronger, which is his biggest priority. Garcia can hit and he has the tools to be a solid middle infielder, but until he gets stronger, he just doesn’t give Class A pitchers much to worry about.
9. Nick Maton, SS
Maton got a late invitation to the player pool. He’s working his way toward being a viable backup option in late 2021 or 2022. Of the Phillies’ many shortstop prospects, Maton is the best defensive option and is also one of the closest to the majors.
10. Casey Martin, SS
Martin’s exceptional freshman season for Arkansas’ NCAA runner-up team seemed to have him on the trajectory toward becoming a 2020 first-round pick. He wasn’t able to build on that in a lesser sophomore season and an even more diminished partial junior year before the shutdown. But his tools make him a potential steal as a third-round pick. Martin is a plus runner, has a plus arm and has at least average raw power. Put that together with a chance to stick at shortstop and it’s a pretty intriguing package.
11. Adonis Medina, RHP
12. Mickey Moniak, OF
13. Johan Rojas, OF
14. Simon Muzziotti, OF
15. Enyel De Los Santos, RHP
16. Erik Miller, LHP
17. Andrick Nava, C
18. Ramon Rosso, RHP
19. JoJo Romero, LHP
20. Deivy Grullon, C
21. Cristopher Sanchez, LHP
22. Damon Jones, LHP
23. Jamari Baylor, SS
24. Addison Russ, RHP
25. Kendall Simmons, 2B/3B
26. Logan O’Hoppe, C
27. Ethan Lindow, LHP
28. Connor Brogdon, RHP
29. Mauricio Llovera, RHP
30. Abrahan Gutierrez, C
The team is deep with catchers. Rafael Marchan’s defensive skills lead the way, but there are a number of potential big leaguers in the group. Similarly, the team has invested a lot of draft capital in shortstops, thanks to the recent drafts of Casey Martin (2020, second round), Bryson Stott (2019, first round), Jamari Baylor (2019, third round) and Nick Maton (2017, seventh round).
Bohm brings some thump along with solid on-base skills, but the system as a whole doesn’t have much power potential. OF Jhailyn Ortiz has massive power and a massive arm, but he has yet to post a .300 on-base percentage in two seasons in full-season ball.
PLAYER POOL TIDBITS
RHP Spencer Howard was extremely impressive during summer camp. He has been sent to the alternate site for what can best be described as service time reasons, but he is expected back shortly. With four pitches and feel, he could make a significant impact in 2020. 3B Alec Bohm will also likely be called up soon after the season begins, but likely just long enough to delay his free agency for a year. RHP Ramon Rosso spent his offseason working out at Driveline Baseball. It seems to have paid off because he boosted his fastball by 2-3 mph to 96-97 mph, which helps his above-average breaking ball play even better. C Logan O’Hoppe got to fulfill a lifelong dream. He grew up as a Yankees’ fan, which made his chance to play in the Phillies’ exhibition game at Yankee Stadium extra special. Although he has yet to play full-season ball, O’Hoppe didn’t look out of place in his chance to play in a MLB stadium.
The Phillies so far have made it through the year without any significant known injuries among their top prospects.