The Philadelphia Phillies' fourth ranked prospect, Griff McGarry, was named Eastern League pitcher of the month for the month of July. The club also announced on Friday that he would be called up to pitch for Triple-A Lehigh Valley. The 24-year-old earned the honor and promotion after putting together his best month of the season to this point.
McGarry began the season on the injured list. He returned in May with one start in Clearwater then has made twelve starts with Double-A Reading. The right-hander has had some up and down appearances this season in the minor leagues. In May, McGarry pitched 13 2/3 innings while posting a 5.27 ERA. In June the highly touted prospect turned things around a bit as he tossed 15 2/3 innings with a 2.87 ERA and 22 strikeouts.
In both May and June, McGarry walked a high number of hitters. In 29 1/3 innings pitched over those two months; he walked 19 opposing hitters. While the strikeout rates remained high, that imposing number of free passes came back to hurt McGarry at times.
Once July came along, something seemed to click for the young right-hander. In 22 1/3 innings he struck out 32 batters and posted a 2.01 ERA. He walked 12 batters which is still higher than the organization would like to see, but it was an improvement over his past few months. Despite a few games with some control issues, McGarry still posted a sub-1.00 WHIP— his first month doing so all season. The strong July performance earned him the honors of top pitcher in the Eastern League. It also showed the Phillies that one of their top pitching prospects was ready for the next level.
McGarry is the Phillies pitching prospect who is the closest to making his big-league debut. He is 24 years old and has shown that he has dominating stuff. His strikeout rate sits at 12.9 K/9 for the season. The main issue still holding him back is his command. The Phillies will likely want to see a continued decrease in the number of walks he surrenders before calling him up to Philadelphia.
The organization has said that they would like McGarry to make a few appearances at Triple-A Lehigh Valley prior to him making his Major League debut. Now that he has been promoted, his call up to Philadelphia could be sooner rather than later. If he can get his command under control at the next minor league level, there is a chance that McGarry could be a late-season addition to the club in 2023.