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, 2009.

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1. Domonic Brown, of
2. Kyle Drabek, rhp
3. Michael Taylor, of
4. Travis D'Arnaud, c
5. Trevor May, rhp
6. Anthony Gose, of
7. Sebastian Valle, c
8. Jarred Cosart, rhp
9. Antonio Bastardo, lhp
10. Domingo Santana, of
Best Hitter for Average Domonic Brown
Best Power Hitter Michael Taylor
Best Strike-Zone Discipline Domonic Brown
Fastest Baserunner Jiwan James
Best Athlete Jiwan James
Best Fastball Scott Mathieson
Best Curveball Kyle Drabek
Best Slider Mike Stutes
Best Changeup Yohan Flande
Best Control Justin DeFratus
Best Defensive Catcher Travis d'Arnaud
Best Defensive Infielder Freddy Galvis
Best Infield Arm Freddy Galvis
Best Defensive Outfielder Anthony Gose
Best Outfield Arm Domonic Brown
Catcher Travis d'Arnaud
First Base Ryan Howard
Second Base Chase Utley
Third Base Sebastian Valle
Shortstop Jimmy Rollins
Left Field Jayson Werth
Center Field Shane Victorino
Right Field Domonic Brown
No. 1 Starter Cole Hamels
No. 2 Starter Cliff Lee
No. 3 Starter Kyle Drabek
No. 4 Starter J.A. Happ
No. 5 Starter Trevor May
Closer Ryan Madson
Year Player, Position 2009
2000 Pat Burrell, 1b/of Rays
2001 Jimmy Rollins, ss Phillies
2002 Marlon Byrd, of Rangers
2003 Gavin Floyd White Sox
2004 Cole Hamels, lhp Phillies
2005 Ryan Howard, 1b Phillies
2006 Cole Hamels, lhp Phillies
2007 Carlos Carrasco, of Indians
2008 Carlos Carrasco, of Indians
2009 Domonic Brown, of Phillies
Year Player, Position 2009
2000 Chase Utley, 2b Phillies
2001 Gavin Floyd, rhp White Sox
2002 Cole Hamels, lhp Phillies
2003 Tim Moss, 2b (3rd round) Out of baseball
2004 Greg Golson, of Rangers
2005 Mike Costanzo, 3b (2nd round) Orioles
2006 Kyle Drabek, rhp Phillies
2007 Joe Savery, lhp Phillies
2008 Anthony Hewitt, 3b/of Phillies
2009 Kelly Dugan of (2nd round) Phillies
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, 2002 $2,000,000
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Philadelphia Phillies

The first Philadelphia entry in the National League, known as the Quakers, went 17-81 way back in 1883. The franchise became the Phillies in 1890 and took 25 years to win its first pennant. Before the franchise captured its first World Series title in 1980, it had won just two pennants and only one World Series game.

The tradition of losing included 13 losing seasons out of 14 from 1987-2000. In July 2007, the Phillies became the first franchise in pro sports history to reach 10,000 losses.

Well, those days are over. No organization transformed its image in the 2000s more than the Phillies.

After winning a second World Series championship in 2008, Philadelphia figured out how to put together a strong encore. The Phillies won the National League East for the third straight season, reaching three straight postseasons for the second time in franchise history, and the NL pennant, marking the first time they played in consecutive World Series. Their success came under new general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., who replaced veteran executive Pat Gillick, who stepped down to make way for his former assistant. Gillick remains with the organization in an advisory capacity.

Amaro faced immediate challenges, and most of his moves worked well. He kept the roster mostly intact, replacing departed free agent Pat Burrell with Raul Ibanez, who paid off with 34 home runs and 93 RBIs.

Amaro held onto prospects last offseason and had plenty on hand when his rotation took a step back, allowing him to trade four of his best—righthanders Carlos Carrasco and Jason Knapp, catcher Lou Marson and shortstop Jason Donald—to the Indians for Cliff Lee. They ranked second, 10th, third and fourth on the Top 10 list last year. When Philadelphia needed more pitching late in the season, the club signed Pedro Martinez, who won five of his nine starts and pitched seven scoreless innings in a League Championship Series start.

The Phillies went 850-769 in the regular season from 2000-2009, good for a .525 winning percentage that's the franchise's best ever for a decade. They've sustained success by blending the added revenue from Citizens Bank Park with a commitment to player development that began in the 1990s.

Their homegrown core starts with Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley, the heart of their explosive offense. Philadelphia also drafted and developed 40 percent of its rotation in 2008 World Series MVP Cole Hamels and rookie sensation J.A. Happ, while Ryan Madson has emerged as one of the game's best setup men. Panamanian Carlos Ruiz is an underrated, cost-effective product of the club's international efforts.

The Phillies also have used prospects in trades, as was the case in 2009 with Lee, 2008 with Joe Blanton and after the 2007 season with Brad Lidge. The deals have thinned out the system, yet Amaro made sure to keep his top position prospect (outfielder Domonic Brown) and pitching prospect (righthander Kyle Drabek) out of the Lee trade. Throw in emerging catchers Travis d'Arnaud and Sebastian Valle, Triple-A outfielder Michael Taylor and young, power arms Jarred Cosart and Trevor May, and Philadelphia still has impact talent on the farm.

Drink it in, Phillies fans. You just had your Best Decade Ever.

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