Juan Mendez – R/R – DSL
1B – Darick Hall – L/R – LoA Lakewood/HiA Clearwater
2B – Brayan Gonzalez – R/R – GCL
3B – Jan Hernandez – R/R – HiA Clearwater
SS – Arquimedes Gamboa – S/R – LoA Lakewood
LF – Ben Pelletier – R/R – GCL
CF – Simon Muzziotti – L/L – GCL/HiA Clearwater
RF – Jhailyn Ortiz – R/R – SS Williamsport
Top 5 Starting Pitchers – (Factor Score) / Highest Level Attained
1. LHP JoJo Romero – (23) / HiA Clearwater
2. LHP Ranger Suarez – (22) / HiA Clearwater “Solid Stash”
** Before we launched this site, Marc and I were providing content to MLBDepthCharts.com, which later became RosterResource.com. Ranger Suarez became a blip after the 2013 season while in the VSL as a relief pitcher. He shot up my spreadsheet the following season and some readers questioned his #2 ranking during my inaugural 2014 UTR-OAS feature, after completing his 3rd season in the Venezuelan Summer League. Suarez’s body of work consisted of 95 K’s with only 4 walks over 102.2 combined VSL innings. I was all prepped for the southpaw to be assigned to Short-Season Williamsport to start the 2015 season, but instead he went to the Gulf Coast League. His rapid ascent came to halt, as the injury bug limited him to only 6 GCL appearances. The organization then took a very cautious approach in only allowing Suarez to make 13 starts in 2016 with S-S Williamsport in 2016. The 21-year old never missed a beat this past season with LoA Lakewood (90 K’s and only 52 hits in 85 IP) and a promotion to HiA Clearwater to recoup his old #2 UTR-OAS ranking. He’ll only be 21-year old through the whole 2018 season and should see Double-A Reading at some point. I recommend a stash to your roster before your FAAB closes this coming season.
3. LHP Nick Fanti – (22) / LoA Lakewood “Legit UTR”
** The string of southpaws continue with another youngster in Fanti, who just turned 20-year old this past December. He’s also another 2017 “One to Watch” to post an outstanding season to become a UTR-OAS. Anti finished 9-2 with a 2.54 ERA at LoA Lakewood in 21 starts. After only 20 appearances in the GCL since being drafted in the 31st round in 2015, Fanti lit-up a peripheral stat line of 9.05 K/9 rate, 2.09 BB/9 rate and sub-one WHIP (0.96) over 120.1 innings.
4. RHP Jose Taveras – (19) / AAA Lehigh Valley
5. RHP Ramon Rosso – (19) / Short-Season Williamsport
**The Dodgers released Rosso in July 2016 and he remained away from pro baseball until the Phillies signed the 21-year old last June. Assigned to the DSL, the 6’4″ 215 right-hander quickly became a dominate arm and rose up the ladder to Williamsport. He amassed 105 strikeouts over 75.2 innings and should be the leading candidate for the Phillies 2018 “One to Watch.
Mid-Season Trade Impact: The Phillies picked up McKenzie Mills (25) from the Washington Nationals for Howie Kendrick. Mills was an 18th round pick in 2014 was amidst a breakout with LoA Hagerstown, and thus the Phillies assigned the 21-year old to HiA Clearwater. Also coming to the Phillies will be starter Alejandro Requena (20.5) and reliever JD Hammer (23) from the Colorado Rockies. Both would have ranked tops within the Rox UTR-OAS roster, with Requena at #2 as a starter and Hammer #1 from the bullpen.
Top 3 Relief Pitchers – (Factor Score) / Highest Level Attained
1. RHP Will Hibbs – (20) / HiA Clearwater
2. RHP Trevor Bettencourt– (18) / HiA Clearwater
3. LHP Jeff Singer – (16) / AA Reading
Mid-Season Trade Impact: The Phillies parted ways with Joaquin Benoit at the trade deadline and acquired Seth McGarry from Pittsburgh. McGarry (10) was the Pirates 2017 topped ranked relief UTR-OAS.
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