Phillies 2016 Draft Picks: How Did the First 20 Fare?
By John Town
Round One: OF Mickey Moniak– As mentioned earlier, the Phillies used the No. 1 overall pick in the draft on Moniak, a high school outfielder out of California. As the team’s first-round pick, he needed to have a good initial season in professional baseball, and he did. With the team’s rookie-level Gulf Coast League affiliate, Moniak posted a .284/.340/.409 line with 28 RBI and ten stolen bases in 46 games. There were still some areas he struggled in, but for the most part he had a strong season. Baseball America thought highly enough of Moniak to rank him as the No. 2 prospect in Philadelphia’s farm system.
Round Two: RHP Kevin Gowdy– The Phils went back to SoCal in selecting Gowdy from Santa Barbara High School in California. Both he and Moniak were committed to UCLA for college; now both are teammates in professional action. Gowdy pitched just nine innings in the GCL, so it’s hard to really evaluate what he did there. However, there was enough to like about Gowdy pre-draft that Ben Badler said he nearly put Gowdy in Philadelphia’s BA top-ten prospect list.
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Round Three: SS Cole Stobbe– Stobbe was the third high schooler in a row selected by Philadelphia, this time coming from Nebraska. He also went to the GCL, posting a solid slash line of .270/.337/.405 in addition to four home runs. Stobbe tried to steal nine times but was caught six times, which is no surprise as speed is not a part of a game at all. He also made 11 errors in 44 games at shortstop – finishing with a .932 fielding percentage – only furthering the notion that a move to third base is coming.
Round Four: LHP JoJo Romero-Romero was the first college product picked by the Phillies, coming out of the same JuCo that Ken Giles and Curt Schilling went to. Romero pitched in short-season Williamsport in 2016, starting ten games for the CrossCutters. In 45.2 innings, Romero had a 2.56 ERA, 3.41 FIP, 1.20 WHIP, 16.4% strikeout rate, and 5.8% walk rate. While he didn’t overpower hitters, he used his control and pitch movement to induce ground balls 57.64% of the time and prevent any major damage.
Round Five: LHP Cole Irvin– Irvin was selected in the draft for third time, but he signed this time after being drafted much sooner than in prior years. The Oregon product appeared in 10 games – starting seven – with Williamsport, posting a 1.97 ERA and 2.88 FIP in 45.2 innings. Irvin also struck out nearly 20% of opposing hitters and walked just 4.3% of hitters. He had a great season in nearly every aspect and Low-A Lakewood should be well within his reach come 2017.