Results tagged ‘ Jesse Biddle ’
I have been asked what I expect from Roy Halladay‘s visit in Los Angeles with orthopedist Lewis Yocum.
My answer: I don’t know, but it is tough to be optimistic.
The best-case scenario is what exactly? A little inflammation, he stops throwing for a while and gradually makes his way back? I guess that would be considered good news, but Halladay has not been effective consistently since 2011. He had three good starts (1.71 ERA) before the last two, but he still fell behind most hitters and worked a lot of deep counts. So even when the results have been solid, he has not been the surgeon he had been in the past. I’m just not sure how much a break from throwing will help.
The worst-case scenario is a torn rotator cuff or something of that nature, and Halladay’s season and possibly career is over. In that case, the Phillies’ chances to make the postseason takes a significant hit, although I contend even with a healthy and effective Halladay this team’s chances have not looked good because of the anemic offense. The Phillies were 4-7 during Halladay’s solid three-start run. The offense averaged 2.7 runs per game in that stretch, but please continue to blame the pitching coach and pitching staff for this team’s problems.
Whether it be wear and tear from a long and productive career (this is a likely scenario for me, his shoulder is just shot) or much worse, Halladay’s struggles are sad to see. I would never claim to know him personally. I know him only from our interactions in the clubhouse. But he is a good guy and a ridiculously hard worker. The stories that have been written about him, the comments people have made about his work ethic and how much he is respected, they have not been exaggerated. He lives up to the hype. So it is tough to watch a guy that has been arguably the best pitcher in baseball struggle like this. But maybe I’m wrong. Maybe he will get good news. I’m just not sure what that could be.
So who replaces Halladay?
My bet is Triple-A left-hander Adam Morgan. I’ve been hearing how he’s not on the 40-man roster, but so what? Morgan (1-2, 3.89 ERA) has the best numbers of the Triple-A starters, although he has struggled in each of his last three starts. But he has performed better overall than Tyler Cloyd, Ethan Martin and B.J. Rosenberg (Cloyd has pitched better in his last two starts. He last pitched Friday.) None of those three have an ERA less than 5.11. I also don’t believe Double-A Reading left-hander Jesse Biddle is an option at this point.
They said they never considered Double-A Reading left-hander Jesse Biddle, who is the organization’s top prospect.
That is not a surprise. Biddle had not pitched above Class A Clearwater before this season. The Phillies would like to get him more experience before they make that jump.
But Biddle certainly has impressed in four starts with Reading. He dominated last night in Harrisburg. He allowed one hit, two walks and struck out 16 in seven scoreless innings. He took a perfect game into the seventh inning before he walked a batter.
“The thing that stood out to me more than the number of strikeouts he had, through six innings he threw 73 pitches,” Phillies director of player personnel Joe Jordan said. “I mean, he really just dominated the strike zone with four pitches. It wasn’t that he went 90-95 pitches to get to that number. That’s what was so impressive to me. The last time I saw him, which was his previous start in Reading, I saw more swings and misses with his fastball than I had ever seen. His stuff is just coming. It’s coming and his ability to use it is getting better. Everything came together last night. Literally, he had four pitches to go to and command of all of them so they were in trouble.”
Of course, the question about any top prospect is this: When will Phillies fans see him in a big-league uniform?
“I think it’s a little premature, but we’re obviously going to keep our eyes on this and we’ll follow it very closely,” Jordan said. “I think you go in with all of these guys, as far as their development plans with the plan, and the players alter it good or bad. Sometimes their ability, their performance, it will make it go one way or the other. Nothing is in stone. He’s where he needs to be. He earned, after what he did in Clearwater last year, the right to go to Reading. So far he’s done a great job. It’s been a month. The weather is going to arm up, the hitters are going to catch up. I think that’s, that’s the way I look at it. He even said it last night – this is my kind of weather, the hitters don’t like hitting in this weather.
“We’re going to follow it very closely. Because he’s one of our best, if not our best. We all know that.”
MLB.com ranks the Phillies’ top 20 prospects.
Catcher Tommy Joseph ranks third in the system behind left-hander Jesse Biddle and right-hander Ethan Martin. Joseph will be interesting to watch in 2013. He will be competing with Sebastian Valle (ranked eighth) for the starting catching job with Triple-A Lehigh Valley. If Joseph wins the job and makes great strides this season, you wonder how the Phillies will view Carlos Ruiz‘s impending free agency? Ruiz is 34, so he isn’t young anymore. If Joseph looks great at Triple-A and Ruiz struggles following his 25-game suspension for using a banned stimulant, which way will the Phillies lean? Ruiz is immensely popular in the Phillies clubhouse. The pitchers love him. Everybody respects him. But the Phillies need to start getting younger. Maybe they look there.
How does MLB.com come up with its Top 100 Prospect rankings?
This year it spoke to 25 individuals in the industry: scouting directors, scouts, front office executives, etc. Those 25 talent evaulators then ranked their top 50 prospects in a format similar to an AP college football or basketball poll. The No. 1 player on each person’s list receives 50 points. The No. 2 player receives 49 points. The 50th player receives one point. You get the idea. Jesse Biddle ranked 60th overall and Ethan Martin ranked 80th. MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo said he originally had Martin ranked lower in the Phillies’ organizational rankings, but moved him up based on the opinions of those talent evaluators putting together their top 50 lists. Interesting stuff.
I wanted to post this last weekend, but things are crazy the final few days of Spring Training. MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo recently wrote about his top 10 Phillies prospects.
Here they are:
- Domonic Brown, OF
- Jonathan Singleton, 1B/OF
- Jarred Cosart, RHP
- Brody Colvin, RHP
- Sebastian Valle, C
- Jesse Biddle, LHP
- Trevor May, RHP
- Aaron Altherr, OF
- Cesar Hernandez, 2B
- Justin De Fratus, RHP
Jesse Biddle understands it could be a few years before he pitches for the Phillies, but wearing a Phillies jersey and cap this afternoon at Citizens Bank Park he could not help but feel he is ready to strike out the Florida Marlins lineup.
Biddle vs. the National League East could happen eventually, but the Phillies think it might be 2014 at the earliest before it does.
Biddle, the 6-foot-5, 225-pound left-hander who the Phillies selected in the first round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, agreed to terms on a contract worth $1.16 million. He will travel to Clearwater, Fla., next week to begin workouts in extended Spring Training and is expected to be in the rotation for the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Phillies when their schedule opens later this month.
If everything goes well, the Phillies think Biddle could be in the big leagues in four to five years.
“I’m getting the start tonight,” he joked. “Roy Halladay is now the No. 2.”
Do we detect life from the Phillies offense?
They scored 10 runs last night in a victory over Florida. It had been a while, hadn’t it? Phillies fall behind, slowly come back, lose the lead, come back again and win. It felt like forever, which is why somebody asked Jayson Werth if it reminded him of an “old style” win?
“Old style?” he said. “You mean like ’50s and ’60s?”
Good answer, but the Phillies hadn’t had a night like this since they beat the Pirates on May 17, 12-2.
There were some encouraging signs:
- Raul Ibanez went 4-for-5, his first four-hit game since May 15, 2009.
- Chase Utley had a couple hits. I’ve been told Utley is healthy. He’s just slumping.
- Ryan Howard had two hits and homered.
- The offense has scored five or more runs in three of their last four games. They went 12 consecutive games scoring three or fewer runs before that.
The middle of the lineup has been an abyss in recent weeks. Little to no production. I’ve been getting a lot of e-mails and questions from people via Twitter and Facebook about the Phillies’ problems and how they can solve them. The short answer: the big guys need to hit and they need Jimmy Rollins healthy. Shaking up the bench won’t do anything. If the Phillies think adding a new bench player is going to save the offense they’re nuts. They simply need Utley, Howard, Werth and Ibanez to start hitting. And they need Rollins back. It’s that simple. Well, it’s not simple. Hitting a baseball is hard, but you know what I mean.
The Phillies are very close to signing first-round pick Jesse Biddle. An announcement could come as early as today.