Philadelphia Phillies shouldn’t give up on slugger prospect Jhailyn Ortiz
The 2023 season might be the last chance for Phillies prospect Jhailyn Ortiz.
Jhailyn Ortiz was a highly touted prospect coming out of the 2015 international signing pool, with then-Philadelphia Phillies general manager Rubén Amaro Jr., all over the Dominican signee — who exceeded the organization’s international salary tax limit.
Reports suggested that Ortiz would have a good opportunity to reach the 40-man roster someday. However, fast-forward seven years, those plans have failed to materialize for the 24-year-old.
Luckily for Ortiz, President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski — whose contract was recently extended through the 2027 season — has protected Ortiz from the Rule 5 Draft or immediate release. What could possibly be the reason — his promising power from the get-go, or the natural ability to field more smoothly thanks to great conditioning?
Last season at Double-A Reading, Ortiz struck out 165 times — one short of Ryan Howard’s minor-league record of 166 through Reading and Lehigh Valley in the same year. Two years later, the 2006 MVP got called up and became the fastest to reach 100 and 200 home runs in Major League Baseball history.
Even though Ortiz struck out repetitively, he still has a shot to prove himself. He has a talented arm and can play either right field or his original position — first base.
The Phillies could surely use some more power in their lineup and are not afraid to replace mediocre fielding from just a season ago. It is a new era of Phillies baseball, and why not see Ortiz for at least the same amount of time that fans saw Darick Hall perform in the 2022 season?
Ortiz has received praise as the No. 1 international prospect from 2015 and slugged .488 in 2021 in High-A and Double-A. He is currently the Phillies organization’s 17th-rated top prospect, according to MLB, and can especially fill in one day for an injured player.