Phillies prospect Adonis Medina could be headed for breakout in 2018

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 06: A general view of Citizens Bank Park during Opening Day between the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies at on April 6, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 06: A general view of Citizens Bank Park during Opening Day between the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies at on April 6, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images) /
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The Phillies have had several pitching prospects break out in recent years. Could 2018 be the year for Adonis Medina to do so?

In 2015, Aaron Nola rocketed up the Phillies farm system. The next year, it was Sixto Sanchez lighting up radar guns in the Gulf Coast League. This season, it was JoJo Romero posting tremendous numbers between Low and High-A.

We have seen several different pitching prospects have breakout seasons in recent years. Who will be the next one?

If you ask Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com, he would say Adonis Medina. He was among 12 prospects listed by Mayo that are set for a breakout season in 2018:

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"Medina had a strong first season in full-season ball in 2017, missing a ton of bats (10 K/9) and keeping hitters at bay (.227 batting average against). A continuation of that up a level will move him up lists in a hurry."

Medina spent all of 2017 in Low-A Lakewood at 20 years old. In 22 starts, he had a 3.01 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, and 3.41 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He logged a career-high 119.2 innings.

Medina’s aforementioned strikeout rate was a huge improvement from his 4.73 K/9 in 2016 in short-season Williamsport. It came in part due to a new and improved slider, which mixes in with the rest of the arsenal.

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The best pitch Medina has is a plus fastball that sits in the mid-90s. The slider adds a solid secondary pitch with the potential to be even better. His changeup is behind the other two pitches, but it still has the looks of a solid offering.

The biggest hole in Medina’s game is staying consistent with his delivery. Lakewood pitching coach Brian Sweeney said that once he does that, it should improve his ability to throw strikes. Medina did lower his walk rate from nine percent in 2016 to 7.7 percent in 2017. He did throw 15 wild pitches and hit 12 batters, so there is still work to be done.

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Medina should start the 2018 season in High-A Clearwater, which is friendly to pitchers. He could be in Double-A Reading as a 21-year-old by the end of the year and be on the fast track to the majors.

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