Phillies option Aumont to Lehigh; promote Neris to bullpen


The Philadelphia Phillies earlier announced they would be selecting the contract of RHP Hector Neris from the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, according to the team’s Twitter account.

With Neris’ contract selected from Lehigh, the impending move was imminent, and Phillippe Aumont was optioned back to Triple-A Lehigh Valley after another disastrous stint in the Majors.

Last night was a tough situation for him to be thrust into, with the team already 5-0 down and the bullpen depleted from Lee’s early exit Friday, but Aumont was provided with another good opportunity for redemption.

What unfolded, however, was downright ugly and embarrassing. He gave up 6 runs on 8 hits over 2 innings, making the score 11-0 Washington and pushing his ERA for the season to 19.06. His struggles have been continuous, allowing 2 runs in an inning against the Mets on July 30th, despite having pitched a scoreless inning two days previous.

Aumont’s Majors line makes grim reading, having pitched 39.2 innings with a 1-5 record, giving up 29 runs on 48 hits, walking 27 with a WHIP of 1.89. Despite being the main piece of the Cliff Lee trade, he hasn’t even impressed in the Minors, going 16-30 over 407.2 innings and 29 starts with a 4.16 ERA.

His inconsistency has been horrible, and his ability to shoot himself in the foot with walks as well as lack of control has ultimately cost him his place again.

Born in the Dominican Republic in 1989, the 25-year-old Neris will be called up to the Majors for the first time in his career, having evidently impressed during stints with Reading and Lehigh Valley this year.

Hector Neris was signed as an undrafted free agent on April 29th, 2010, and has quickly risen through the ranks in his 4 years in the system.

In 2010 he went 1-1 with a 3.24 ERA in 16 games and 41.2 innings pitched for the DSL Phillies, before posting a total 2.75 ERA in 2011 through 59 innings pitched with Williamsport and Lakewood.

The rise continued as Neris was playing at Clearwater in 2012, posting a 3.55 ERA and a 4-2 record through 78.2 innings pitched. In 2013 he was at Reading, and they wanted to see his suitability as a starter, starting 8 times in 46 games he featured in. That season he was 6-4 with a 4.55 ERA through 97 innings, giving up 14 homers, striking out 93 and walking 39.

Through 11 games and 19.1 innings pitched at Reading, Neris was 2-0 with a stellar ERA of 1.86 out of the bullpen including 12 strikeouts and an opponent batting average of .188. This earnt him a call-up to Triple-A Lehigh, for whom he has started a game, but featured mostly out of the ‘pen, posting a 3-2 record with a 4.67 ERA through 44.1 innings, walking 14 and striking out 33. Neris is currently on a 12 inning scoreless streak.

Neris has had a remarkable rise considering his undrafted status, many once again goes to show that prospects are very hard to judge, and certain immeasurable factors come into play. He still has a lot to work on, including his control and keeping his BB numbers down. But he is developing nicely and should be an interesting addition to the Phillies bullpen.

As for Phillippe Aumont, one imagines it will just be a matter of time before the Phillies sever ties with him. It’s been a disappointing five years for Aumont and the Phillies, who have given him multiple opportunities to showcase his talent and potential, but sadly it hasn’t worked out at all.