Phillies’ First-Round Pick has Connection to Joe Girardi

DAVID, PANAMA - AUGUST 19: Andrew Painter #24 of United States pitches in the 2nd inning during the final match of WSBC U-15 World Cup Super Round at Estadio Kenny Serracin on August 19, 2018 in David, Panama. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
DAVID, PANAMA - AUGUST 19: Andrew Painter #24 of United States pitches in the 2nd inning during the final match of WSBC U-15 World Cup Super Round at Estadio Kenny Serracin on August 19, 2018 in David, Panama. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images) /
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The Philadelphia Phillies selected RHP Andrew Painter in the first round of the 2021 Draft on Sunday.

The pitcher, who stands at a towering six-foot-seven, won the Gatorade High School Player of the Year in Florida for 2020-2021, and posted a 0.38 ERA over 47 innings this year.

Despite that dazzling ERA, Painter wasn’t projected to draft in the top-20, making it a big surprise that the Phillies grabbed him with the thirteenth pick, especially considering Khalil Watson was still available.

But maybe it wasn’t such a surprise after all.

Phillies first-round pick Andrew Painter was high school teammates with Joe Girardi’s son.

Painter, who thrived at Calvary Christian Academy in Fort Lauderdale, was teammates with Dante Girardi. As in, Phillies manager Joe Girardi’s son.

He was named after his father’s friend, Dante Bichette, by the way.

The younger Girardi, now playing ball at FIU, overlapped with Painter for two years in high school. Presumably, this means that his father saw a lot of Painter while watching his son’s games.

Obviously, a lot more goes into scouting draft picks – especially the first-round pick – than a manager’s eye test at his son’s ballgames. But maybe it did give Painter a bit of an edge on the competition. After all, the mock drafts from the most informed sources had Painter getting picked way deeper in the first round, or even sinking to the second round. FanGraphs had him going 35th to the Cincinnati Reds, and Prospects Live also said Reds, as their compensation pick, while CBS Sports thought the Yankees might take him 20th overall. MLB.com predicted accurately, though.

Painter verbally committed to be a Florida Gator in November 2020, but will likely enter the Phillies minor-league system instead. And eventually, he’ll go from playing with a Girardi to playing for one.

Related Story. Five Facts about Phillies’ First-Round Pick, Andrew Painter. light

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