An update on the Philadelphia Phillies ‘High-A’ level minor league club, the Clearwater (FL) Threshers.
The BlueClaws are 26-16, which has them a half-game up on the Tampa Yankees at the top of the standings, though the club has lost their last two games.
Manager Greg Legg was drafted as a player by the Phillies in the 22nd round of the 1982 MLB Amateur Draft out of Oklahoma State University.
Legg made 22 plate appearances in the big leagues with the Phils across eight games as a utility infielder in the 1986 and 1987 seasons, so he is very familiar with the dreams of his young charges.
The Threshers recently got a bump in their lineup with the injury rehabilitation of Phillies’ utility player veteran Cody Asche, who is working his way back from an oblique injury.
Asche has hit just .167 over his first 18 at-bats while playing exclusively in left field. Jordan Hall with CSNPhilly.com quoted Asche just this past Monday on his position switch last year from 3rd base to the outfield.
“As I’ve gone through this process, I’ve learned a lot about myself, a lot about myself as a player,” Asche said. “I know wholeheartedly that the organization has my best interest in mind.”
The 22-year old Kingery is hitting for a .263/.345/.408 slash line and leads the club with 14 doubles, 10 steals, and 26 runs scored. CSNPhilly.com contributor Bill Whitehead quoted Legg on Kingery just yesterday.
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“He brings a lot of energy. He’s real solid defensively, good at turning the double plays and doesn’t really miss much,” Legg said. “He’s got good range and speed on the bases. He’s been a nice igniter of our offense as far as getting on base and scoring runs. He’s got a spark plug-type attitude and he’s a tough kid, so we’ve got a good player right there.”
Also featured in the Clearwater lineup are 22-year old 1st baseman Zach Green, 23-year old 3rd baseman Mitch Walding, 23-year old 1st baseman Kyle Martin, 21-year old shortstop Malquin Canelo, 21-year old outfielder Cord Sandberg, and 20-year old outfielder Carlos Tocci.
21-year old right-hander Tom Eshelman is one of the team’s starting pitchers. He came over to the Phillies organization as part of the big package from the Houston Astros for closer Ken Giles.
Eshelman has allowed 36 hits over 39.2 innings with an outstanding 39/9 K:BB ratio. 21-year old lefty Elneiry Garcia has allowed just 31 hits over 41.2 innings with a 35/11 K:BB ratio and has an excellent 2.38 ERA.
Also pitching well at Clearwater are 21-year old righty Tyler Vizza, who has a 38/7 K:BB ratio and a tidy 2.87 ERA over 37.2 innings and who has tossed the staff’s lone complete game.
23-year old Ranfi Casimiro is a 6’8″ Dominican right-hander who is 5-2 with a 3.35 ERA. He has allowed just 32 hits in 37.2 innings with a 40/10 K:BB ratio and is likely to see a promotion to AA Reading soon.
Matt Imhof is a 22-year old lefty who was the Phillies 2nd round pick at 47th overall in the 2014 MLB Amateur Draft. He has allowed 30 hits in 37.2 innings, but has had big time command issues, walking 27 batters against 28 strikeouts.
A pair of 21-year old right-handed relievers are having solid seasons and bear watching. Victor Arano has allowed 18 hits over 21.1 innings with a 22/9 K:BB, and Alexis Rivero has yielded just 12 hits in 19.1 innings with a strong 24/5 K:BB ratio.
The Threshers play their home games at a ball park very familiar to most Phillies fans, Bright House Field in Clearwater, the Phils’ spring training home.
Bright House Field is located on the west side of U.S. highway 19 along Florida’s Gulf Coast, and is one of the most fan-friendly and simply gorgeous places to watch a baseball game in the nation.
We’ll be bringing you the latest updates on the FSL standings and the progress of top Phillies prospects at Clearwater approximately every two weeks.
ks here at TBOH, as well as providing any major news as those stories develop.