Philadelphia Phillies: Top 10 Prospects

Philadelphia Phillies

Baseball America's Top 10 Prospects lists are based on projections of a player's long-term worth after discussions with scouting and player-development personnel. All players who haven't exceeded the major league rookie standards of 130 at-bats or 50 innings pitched (without regard to service time) are eligible. Ages are as of April 1, 2007.

1.Carlos Carrasco, rhp
2.Kyle Drabek, rhp
3.Adrian Cardenas, ss/2b
4.Edgar Garcia, rhp
5.Scott Mathieson, rhp
6.Josh Outman, lhp
7.Michael Bourn, of
8.J.A. Happ, lhp
9.Matt Maloney, lhp
10.Greg Golson, of
Best Hitter for AverageAdrian Cardenas
Best Power HitterMike Costanzo
Best Strike-Zone DisciplineCarlos Ruiz
Fastest BaserunnerGreg Golson
Best AthleteGreg Golson
Best FastballCarlos Carrasco
Best CurveballKyle Drabek
Best SliderJosh Outman
Best ChangeupJ.A. Happ
Best ControlJ.A. Happ
Best Defensive CatcherTim Gradoville
Best Defensive InfielderFreddy Galvez
Best Infield ArmWelinson Baez
Best Defensive OutfielderGreg Golson
Best Outfield ArmGreg Golson
CatcherCarlos Ruiz
First BaseRyan Howard
Second BaseChase Utley
Third BaseMike Costanzo
ShortstopJimmy Rollins
Left FieldPat Burrell
Center FieldAaron Rowand
Right FieldAdrian Cardenas
No. 1 StarterCole Hamels
No. 2 StarterBrett Myers
No. 3 StarterCarlos Carrasco
No. 4 StarterKyle Drabek
No. 5 StarterFreddy Garcia
CloserScott Mathieson
YearPlayer, Position2006
1997Scott Rolen, 3bCardinals
1998Ryan Brannan, rhpOut of baseball
1999Pat Burrell, 1bPhillies
2000Pat Burrell, 1b/ofPhillies
2001Jimmy Rollins, ssPhillies
2002Marlon Byrd, ofNationals
2003Gavin Floyd, rhpPhillies
2004Cole Hamels, lhpPhillies
2005Ryan Howard, 1bPhillies
2006Cole Hamels, lhpPhillies
YearPlayer, Position2006
1997*J.D. Drew, ofDodgers
1998Pat Burrell, 1bPhillies
1999Brett Myers, rhpPhillies
2000Chase Utley, 2bPhillies
2001Gavin Floyd, rhpPhillies
2002Cole Hamels, lhpPhillies
2003Tim Moss, 2b
(3rd round)
2004Greg Golson, ofPhillies
2005Mike Costanzo
(2nd round)
2006Kyle Drabek, rhpPhillies
Gavin Floyd, 2001$4,200,000
Pat Burrell, 1998$3,150,000
Brett Myers, 1999$2,050,000
Cole Hamels, 2002$2,000,000
Chase Utley, 2000$1,780,000
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Philadelphia Phillies

After dealing Bobby Abreu and Cory Lidle to the Yankees at the trade deadline, the Phillies appeared to turning the page and starting to rebuild. But with Abreu gone, the clubhouse suddenly came together and homegrown talents Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and Cole Hamels led an improbable run at the wild card.

Though Philadelphia fell three games short of the Dodgers for the wild card, the Phillies served notice that they will be legitimate contenders in the National League East in 2007. Howard set a club record with 58 homers and won the league MVP award. Utley set a franchise record for second basemen with 32 homers and scored an NL-best 131 runs, four ahead of Rollins, who hit a career-high 25 homers. Hamels went 7-4, 2.60 over the final two months, which may be the first step in establishing himself as one of the game's top southpaws.

Furthermore, the Phillies re-energized the fan base in a city known to have more brotherly love for the NFL’s Eagles or even the NHL’s Flyers. Now the next task is to end a 13-year postseason drought.

To do that, Philadelphia will rely heavily on its homegrown core, which also includes Pat Burrell and Brett Myers. The farm system may make a couple of new contributions as well. Carlos Ruiz has flown under the radar during his eight-year pro career but could be Mike Lieberthal's successor at catcher. Outfielder Michael Bourn, lefthander J.A. Happ and righties Joe Bisenius and Zach Segovia probably will begin the season in the minors but are close to being ready if needed. The Phillies also had high hopes for righthander Scott Mathieson--who floundered in his 2006 big league debut--but he'll miss most or all of 2007 after having Tommy John surgery.

Though the system has churned out Howard, Utley and Hamels in recent years, it has lacked depth. As a result, general manager Pat Gillick had assistant GM Mike Arbuckle got more involved in the draft. The club's scouting director from 1993-2001, Arbuckle oversaw drafts that included Scott Rolen, Adam Eaton, Rollins, Randy Wolf, Burrell, Ryan Madson, Myers, Utley and Howard.

In 2006 the Phillies kicked off their draft with a pair of intriguing picks who rank second and third on this prospect list. They gambled the 18th choice on mercurial righthander Kyle Drabek, who had one of the best arms but also one of the most questionable makeups available. In the supplemental first round they grabbed sweet-swinging shortstop Adrian Cardenas, Baseball America's High School Player of the Year.

Philadelphia's minor league affiliates combined for a .526 winning percentage, eighth-best in baseball, highlighted by low Class A Lakewood. The BlueClaws went 84-55 during the regular season and won the South Atlantic League playoffs behind a rotation led by the organization's top prospect, righthander Carlos Carrasco, and lefties Josh Outman and Matt Maloney.

For a team planning to contend, the Phillies surprisingly added three players in the major league Rule 5 draft at the Winter Meetings. Live-armed righthanders Jim Ed Warden and Alfredo Simon could claim spots in the bullpen, though defensive-minded catcher Ryan Budde seems a stretch to make the club.