Introducing the 2015 Clearwater Threshers
Monday was Opening Day in Major League Baseball. Now it’s the Minor Leagues turn, with most of MiLB kicking off their schedule today. That includes the team that I’ll be covering the most this spring and summer, the Phillies ‘High-A’ class affiliates, the Clearwater Threshers.
The team has been associated with the Phils since being founded in 1985 as the Clearwater Phillies. They held that name and played at the Phils then-spring home of Jack Russell Stadium right through the 2003 season.
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At that point, the team moved to new Bright House Field, the same ballpark enjoyed by fans of the parent Phillies each spring training season during February and March. With the new venue, the team nickname was changed to Threshers.
Hill spent 2014 and spring training this year as a catcher with the Phillies, will be a Threshers coach.
(Photo Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports)
In final preparation for the new season, Wednesday was a news-filled day for the Threshers organization. Koyie Hill, who was in spring training with the Phillies, and who appeared in 10 games a year ago as a backup catcher, was added to the coaching staff.
The team also welcomed a new player, as 26-year old utility man Brodie Greene was added to the Threshers roster. Greene was originally drafted by the Phils back in 2009, but chose to attend Texas A&M instead of turning pro. He was then drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in 2010, and has played in their minor league system ever since.
The Threshers 2015 roster includes three players on the MLB Pipeline list of the Phillies Top 20 prospects. They are Matt Imhof, the #8 prospect who was the club’s 2nd round choice in last year’s Amateur Draft out of Cal Poly. Andrew Knapp is a catcher listed as the #13 prospect, a 2013 choice in the 2nd round out of Cal. Outfielder Dylan Cozens is listed as the #20 prospect, a 2012 choice in the 2nd round out of an Arizona high school.
The annual Season Ticket Holders’ Party was held on Wednesday night at Bright House Field. It was the best weather we have had in the last week, as the heat has seemed to abate a bit.
You can watch the video of the introductions below. I highly recommend you take the time to watch it, as this years’ team is proving to have a lot of personality. They were a lot of fun to watch last night.
I really have a good feeling about this year’s team. I know quite a few of these guys, and have a lot of faith in their talents. I think we will be very competitive this year in the North Division of the Florida State League, and I am excited for the season to start!
Here is the Clearwater Threshers roster for Opening Day 2015:
Greg Legg, Manager
Rob Ducey, Hitting Coach
Steve Schrenk, Pitching Coach
Koyie Hill, Coach
Lee Ridenhour (“Rocket Arm”)