Results tagged ‘ Sebastian Valle ’

Biddle, Franco Headed to Big League Camp

The Phillies yesterday announced they have invited five more players to Spring Training as non-roster invitees.

The quintet includes left-hander Jesse Biddle, third baseman Maikel Franco, right-hander Ken Giles, left-hander Mario Hollands and catcher Sebastian Valle. MLB.com ranks Biddle and Franco as the top two prospects in the organization, respectively.

Biddle went 5-14 with a 3.64 ERA in 27 starts last season with Double-A Reading. Franco hit a combined .320 with 31 home runs and 103 RBIs in 134 games between Class A Clearwater and Reading. Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Franco could compete with Cody Asche for a job at third base, although Asche is the favorite.

Biddle is expected to open the season with Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Giles is a hard thrower, striking out 16 in 10 1/3 innings in the Arizona Fall League. He went 2-2 with a 6.31 ERA with Clearwater, although he was limited to just 24 appearances because of injury.

Hollands went 7-3 with a 2.86 ERA in 27 appearances (20 starts) with Clearwater and Reading. The Phillies recently removed Valle from the 40-man roster. He had been the top catching prospect in the organization, but Cameron Rupp and Tommy Joseph surpassed him last season.

The Phillies have invited 16 players to camp as non-roster invitees: pitchers Biddle, Shawn Camp, Giles, Hollands, Cesar Jimenez, Jeff Manship and Sean O’Sullivan; catchers Lou Marson and Valle; infielders Andres Blanco, Reid Brignac and Franco; and outfielders Leandro Castro, Tony Gwynn Jr., Dave Sappelt and Clete Thomas.

Aumont Talks Brawl, Fight for Phillies Bullpen Job

Phillippe AumontPhillippe Aumont rejoined Phillies camp today with his limbs intact and ready to compete for a job in the bullpen.

The Phillies are thankful for that.

He had been playing with Canada in the World Baseball Classic. It lost to Team USA over the weekend, ending its tournament run, but not before it provided the tournament’s most memorable moment when it brawled in the ninth inning in a game last week against Mexico. There were some legitimate haymakers thrown during the melee, including Phillies minor league outfielder Tyson Gillies tossing Mexican pitcher Alfredo Aceves to the ground like a rag doll.

Asked which NHL players he would have liked to have had at that moment, Aumont said Georges Laroque and Darcy Hordichuk.

“It was pretty intense,” he said this morning at Bright House Field. “It was the first time I’ve ever been in an actual brawl where people were going to town on (each other). … I was trying to stay out of trouble. I was more frozen than anything else when I got there. When I got there everything kind of separated. I looked out and tried not to get sucker punched or anything.”

Aumont described the postgame scene following Canada’s victory over Mexico like this: “Just a bunch of failed hockey players pumped up and ready to do another one.”

(more…)

Players Option Five to Minor League Camp

Tyson Gillies, Alfredo AcevesThe Phillies optioned five players to Minor League camp this morning:

  • Right-hander Tyler Cloyd.
  • Right-hander B.J. Rosenberg.
  • Left-hander Mauricio Robles.
  • Outfielder Tyson Gillies.
  • Catcher Sebastain Valle.

The Phillies have 42 players in big-league camp (non-roster invitees in parenthesis): 20 pitchers (five), four catchers (two), 10 infielders (three) and eight outfielders (one).

Phillies’ Top 20 Prospects

MLB.com ranks the Phillies’ top 20 prospects.

Click this link to read the story.

Click this link to read profiles on the top 20.

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.

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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.

Chooch Suspended 25 Games

Chooooooooch?

Major League Baseball announced this afternoon that Carlos Ruiz has been suspended 25 games for using an amphetamine. The suspension begins at the beginning of the 2013 season, which means Ruiz is unable to play until April 28 against the New York Mets at Citi Field.

“I am sincerely regretful for my mistake in taking a prohibited stimulant,” Ruiz said in a statement. “I apologize to my teammates, the Phillies organization and the Philadelphia fans … I look forward to returning to the field and working toward bringing a championship back to Philadelphia in 2013.”

Losing Ruiz the first month of the season will make that pursuit a little more difficult. Ruiz, who will forfeit about $770,000 of his $5 million salary, had a career-season in 2012, hitting .325 with 32 doubles, 16 home runs, 68 RBIs, a .394 on-base percentage, a .540 slugging percentage and a .935 on-base-plus-slugging percentage.

This is the second time Ruiz has tested positive for an amphetamine. The first time a player tests positive for a prohibited stimulant the results remain private and the player is not suspended.

“The Phillies fully support Major League Baseball’s Drug Program,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said in a statement. “We are disappointed by the news of this violation of the program. We will support Carlos in an appropriate manner and move forward to achieve our goal to play championship-caliber baseball in 2013.”

The suspension means Erik Kratz likely will open the season as the team’s starting catcher.

Kratz hit .248 with nine doubles, nine home runs, 26 RBIs and an .809 OPS in 50 games last season. But he hit just .181 with two doubles, two home runs, nine RBIs and a .515 OPS in 23 games from Aug. 24 through the end of the regular season.

Ruiz’s absence the first month of the season means catching prospects Tommy Joseph and Sebastian Valle could get closer looks in Spring Training as the Phillies will need a backup catcher. Brian Schneider is not expected back.

Ruiz will be able to participate in Spring Training workouts and Grapefruit League games in Florida in February and March. He also will be allowed to take batting practice before the gates open before regular-season games. He is eligible to begin a rehab assignment five days before the end of his suspension, which would be April 23.

Phillies Add Four to 40-Man

The Phillies announced today they have placed right-hander Phillippe Aumont, left-hander Jacob Diekman, catcher Sebastian Valle and outfielder Tyson Gillies on the 40-man roster.

Here’s a look at the four:

  • Aumont, 22, went 2-5 with seven saves and a 2.68 ERA in 43 appearances for Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He struck out 78 batters in 53 2/3 innings and held opponents to a .216 batting average. The Phillies picture Aumont as a late-inning reliever for the Phillies, possibly as a closer. Baseball America ranked Aumont as the organization’s fifth-best prospect following the season.
  • Gillies, 23, has been unable to stay on the field since joining the Phillies because of injuries. He played in just three games for Class A Clearwater, but played for Scottsdale in the Arizona Fall League. They believe he has potential. He just needs to get on the field and play.
  • Valle, 21, hit .284 with five homers and 40 RBIs in 91 games for Clearwater. He hit .368 against left-handed pitching. The Phillies signed Valle as an amateur free agent in 2006. Baseball America ranked Valle as the organizations’ third-best prospect.
  • Diekman, 23, went 0-1 with a 3.05 ERA and three saves in 53 appearances with Reading. He allowed 13 earned runs in 18 innings in his first 18 appearances, but had a 1.72 ERA over his final 35 appearances. He also struck out 83 batters in 65 innings and held opponents to a .199 average, including a .099 mark against left-handers. Diekman, who the Phillies selected in the 30th round in 2007, allowed one earned run and struck out 14 in 11 1/3 innings in the Arizona Fall League.

MLB.com’s Top 10 Phillies Prospects

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:

  1. Domonic Brown, OF
  2. Jonathan Singleton, 1B/OF
  3. Jarred Cosart, RHP
  4. Brody Colvin, RHP
  5. Sebastian Valle, C
  6. Jesse Biddle, LHP
  7. Trevor May, RHP
  8. Aaron Altherr, OF
  9. Cesar Hernandez, 2B
  10. Justin De Fratus, RHP

Click here for the full report.

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We're Talking AFL and Winter Ball

The Phillies are making calls to agents, general managers and players, trying to construct a 25-man roster that will take them back to the World Series in 2010. But while Ruben Amaro Jr. works on the present, the future is working elsewhere.

The Arizona Fall League’s season is complete, but winter league baseball in Mexico, Venezuela and Puerto Rico is underway. Here’s a look at some of the position players in action.

  • Domonic Brown (20th-round pick in 2006): Baseball America considers Brown, a 6-foot-5 outfielder, to be the organization’s top prospect. He hit .229 with nine doubles, two triples, two home runs and 18 RBIs in 30 games for the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League. He made the AFL All-Star team after hitting the ball well to start the season, but he struggled near the end. “I think he was probably pressing some toward the end,” assistant GM Benny Looper said on Monday. “It’s been a long year for him, and he probably needs a break right now. He has the tools. He’s an exciting guy to watch. He did fine.”
  • Michael Taylor (fifth-round pick in 2007): Baseball America ranks Taylor, a 6-foot-6 outfielder, as the organization’s No. 3 prospect, following Brown and right-hander Kyle Drabek. Taylor is hitting .308 with four doubles, one home run and 11 RBIs in 19 games in Mexico. “He’s handled his own,” Looper said. “We wanted him to see the veteran pitchers in that league, who will use the breaking pitches behind in the count.”
  • Sebastian Valle (signed as an amateur free agent in 2006): The organization’s seventh-best prospect according to Baseball America, the 6-foot-1 catcher is showing that he can hit in Mexico, going .303 with five doubles, one triple, 10 home runs and 24 RBIs in 29 games. “We thought he was going to hit,” Looper said. “I heard that before I came here. And after watching him this year, we think he has a good chance to hit. He needs to improve his footwork behind the plate, the catching and throwing. But he’s playing against some veterans down there and he’s holding his own, maybe doing a little better than that. He’s got good bat speed. He’ll hit for some power, but he’s a guy that will square up a lot of pitches. He’s got a pretty good idea up there with his bat.”
  • John Mayberry Jr. (first-round pick in 2005 by Texas): The outfielder is hitting .314 with four doubles, seven home runs and 23 RBIs in 32 games. “Mayberry has done all right,” Looper said. “One of the reasons we wanted him to go to Mexico was to see a lot of breaking pitches, which he has seen a lot of. He has made some adjustments and has hit some home runs.”
  • Tuffy Gosewisch (11th-round pick in 2006): The catcher hit .318 with two doubles and five RBIs in 11 games. “He’s a catch-and-throw guy,” Looper said. “If he can hit a little bit, he has a chance to be a big league backup catcher, at the minimum.”
  • Quintin Berry (fifth-round pick in 2006): Berry, whom the Phillies added to the 40-man roster last week to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft, just got started in Puerto Rico. He is hitting .154 with four walks in seven games.

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