No. 9: Right-Handed Pitcher Adonis Medina
Adonis Medina was the Phillies breakout pitcher of the Gulf Coast League in 2015, bursting onto the scene at 18 years old. The Dominican prospect threw his fastball into the low-90s while running it up to 97 mph at times. Medina finished the year with a 2.98 ERA and 1.19 WHIP. Baseball America ranked him as the No. 18 prospect in the GCL after the year.
Moving up one step in the minor-league ladder, Medina led a short-season Williamsport team “heavy on raw, but high-upside, Latin talent” according to Matt Winkelman of The Good Phight. Winkelman named Medina the top pitching prospect on the team.
More from Phillies Prospects
- Prospect Andrew Baker could help Phillies bullpen in 2023
- Phillies manager suggests Andrew Painter could make Opening Day roster
- Phillies No. 1-ranked prospect Andrew Painter receives national accolade
- Phillies top prospect Andrew Painter continues to dominate
- Philadelphia Phillies prospects thriving is a positive sign for the future
Medina didn’t match his already below-average strikeout rate from the GCL with the CrossCutters. He finished the year striking out just 12.8% of opposing hitters. Medina also struggled with his control down the stretch, walking nearly 12% of batters in August.
While Medina didn’t overpower hitters, he was able to create weak contact.
Medina induced ground balls on 56.72% of batted balls with opposing hitters having a meager .214 batting average on balls in play. The high ground-ball rate is reminiscent of Aaron Nola. I’m not saying Medina and Nola are the same type of pitcher, but they both possess the ability to create groundouts.
Medina is able to induce this high rate of ground balls thanks to his plus fastball that has plenty of sink. There is the hope Medina can have three plus pitches in time. Both his breaking ball and changeup flash plus, but his breaking ball is ahead of changeup. He is more control than command, but even then his control can waver.
Even though Medina didn’t perform well this year, Medina came in as the No. 11 prospect in the New York-Penn League according to Michael Lananna of Baseball America. Lanana said that Medina “should miss more bats as he learns to command his weapons.”
If everything breaks right for Medina, he could have three plus pitches that equates to a solid mid-rotation starter. However, that is a long ways away and his major-league debut may not even come in this decade. Medina could reach his ceiling or completely bottom out by then. The likely future role for Medina is somewhere in the middle as a strong reliever or back-end starter.