With the post-2016 prospect rankings underway, it’s time to take a look at prospects No. 21-25 in the Phillies system. This section features plenty of pitchers.
Now we’re into the thick of the Phillies prospects. In the last section, I profiled Jesmuel Valentin, Malquin Canelo, Deivi Grullon, JoJo Romero, and Jose Pujols. All are talented players, but there are still roadblocks that could easily prevent them from reaching the major-leagues.
The Phillies, like many other teams, will need pitchers, and lots of them. This year alone, Charlie Morton, Aaron Nola, and Zach Eflin all suffered season-ending injuries. Jeremy Hellickson and Vincent Velasquez also each spent time on the disabled list.
Someone will have to fill the holes in the rotation left by injuries. In 2015, the Phillies had the likes of Jerome Williams, Chad Billingsley, and Kevin Correia start games. Meanwhile, the team had to use just one journeyman, Phil Klein, in the rotation this year.
The Phillies didn’t need journeyman starters this year because they were able to develop starters internally. The Phillies filled the rotation with players from their own minor-league system, including Eflin, Adam Morgan, and Jake Thompson.
Next season, the same should still hold true. Velasauez, Eflin, Eickhoff, and hopefully Nola should all return to the Opening Day rotation. Out of MLB.com’s top 30 Phillies prospects, 14 are pitchers, including some in this section. The team should have a pipeline of starters when injuries inevitably strike.
Without much more rambling, let’s dive into prospects No. 21-25 in the rankings.