3 Phillies non-roster relievers thriving so far in spring
By Matt Rappa
3. Bryan Mitchell
A five-year veteran in the majors — who pitched four seasons with the New York Yankees from 2014-17 — right-handed reliever Bryan Mitchell has reunited with manager Joe Girardi this spring.
The Phillies signed the soon-to-be 30-year-old to a minor-league deal this past offseason, and so far he has shown he deserves serious consideration for the Phillies bullpen. Mitchell made his spring debut on February 28, tossing two scoreless innings while striking out three batters and allowing just one hit and no walks. The right-hander then had two consecutive scoreless appearances — one inning each with three strikeouts overall — opposite his former team in the Yankees.
Mitchell’s spring success continued into a March 10 appearance against the Detroit Tigers, tossing another scoreless inning while striking out one. He ran into his first difficulty this past Saturday, against the same team, allowing four hits, three runs, including a home run, and one walk. Each of his two outs recorded were strikeouts, however — a positive sign.
Combined as a member of the Yankees under Girardi, Mitchell went 2-6 with a 4.94 ERA, 1.617 WHIP, and 64-44 strikeouts-to-walks ratio spanning 48 appearances, nine starts, and 17 games finished. After the 2017 season, the Yankees traded Mitchell to the San Diego Padres in a three-player swap. He went on to appear in 11 starts and five relief appearances with the Padres in 2018, going 2-4 with a 5.42 ERA, 1.753 WHIP, and an underwhelming 38-43 strikeouts-to-walks ratio.
Mitchell has not pitched in the majors since. Last year, the North Carolina native was with the Chicago White Sox on a minor-league pact, but was released from their 60-man player pool in August. Perhaps, he will get another chance to throw big-league innings this coming season in red pinstripes.