Caleb Ricketts, C, No. 15 prospect
The Philadelphia Phillies clearly don't have an opening for a starting catcher anytime soon, thanks to J.T. Realmuto holding down the spot through the 2025 season. Still, it's never too soon to develop depth at the position at the minor league level. It's the one position on the field where a player is guaranteed to take a beating over a 162-game season. Having reliable options is a need that teams can't afford not to have.
The Phillies have a promising backstop currently at High-A Jersey Shore by the name of Caleb Ricketts. Only one year removed from college baseball, the 2022 seventh-round draft pick earned his spot on MLB Pipeline's All-Star list with an impressive first full season as a professional in 2023.
Ricketts had a solid year offensively, splitting most of his games between Low- and High-A. Hitting .270 with a .711 OPS, four home runs, and 50 RBI in 70 games, Ricketts seems ready to face more advanced pitching in 2024.
An optimistic view would see Ricketts continue his offensive success with a longer look at High-A pitching and possibly play his way to Double-A Reading late in the season. How his bat, defense, and ability to handle a pitching staff develop will determine what kind of Major League contributor he can ultimately be.
Timeline: Late 2025 or early 2026 would seem likely for Caleb Ricketts to make his debut in a Phillies uniform at the earliest. J.T. Realmuto is the starting catcher until his contract runs out after the 2025 season, so there's plenty of time for Ricketts to emerge as the organization's catcher of the future.