Phillies ink undrafted Delaware native RHP Billy Sullivan IV
The Phillies have signed undrafted free-agent RHP Billy Sullivan IV
Among the Philadelphia Phillies’ recent undrafted free-agent signees includes left-hander Jake McKenna out of Ocean City High School.
Now, the organization has inked a deal with another arm from the tri-state area: right-handed pitcher Billy Sullivan IV out of the University of Delaware, the program announced on Monday.
Just like McKenna, the Phillies are Sullivan’s childhood favorite team, with him growing up in New Castle, Delaware. The redshirt sophomore was previously drafted by the Phillies in the 28th round of the 2017 amateur draft out of Delaware’s Saint Mark’s High School, however he did not sign.
Listed as 6-foot-2 and 195 pounds, Sullivan only had one full season with the Blue Hens, 2018, when he went 7-3 with a 2.97 ERA across 72 2/3 innings; his 95 strikeouts led the team, while his ERA ranked inside the top-10 in the conference, earning him 2018 CAA Rookie of the Year honors.
Also, Sullivan’s 11.76 strikeouts per nine innings that year is the fifth-best in a single-season in Delaware Blue Hens program history. Head coach Jim Sherman says he is happy for Sullivan, because “this is everything he’s really wanted.”
“[Billy has] always wanted to jump in to pro ball and his arm is ready for it,” Sherman says. “He believes in himself that he’s going to be a big-leaguer one day and I won’t be surprised to see him in the majors in the really near future.”
Sullivan made just two starts in 2019 before needing Tommy John surgery; the COVID-19 pandemic also sidelined his would-be third collegiate season.
With this year’s June MLB draft shortened from 40 rounds to five, teams are able to sign an unlimited amount of undrafted free agents for up to $20,000. Sullivan is the latest of those eligible to be signed.