Phillies' Rule 5 pick Noah Song to make surprise early report to team

Phillies prospect Noah Song
Phillies prospect Noah Song / Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

Noah Song will report to the Phillies earlier than expected.

When the Philadelphia Phillies selected right-hander Noah Song from the Boston Red Sox in the Rule 5 Draft earlier this offseason, it was unknown of exactly when the 25-year-old would report to the club — if ever.

Song — a former Dave Dombrowski fourth-round Red Sox draft pick out of the United States Naval Academy — had not thrown professionally since 2019 because of his active Navy service commitment.

Wednesday afternoon, the Phillies announced that Song had his services transferred from active duty to selective reserves, enabling him to play professional baseball while still serving the United States. Song will report to spring training camp in Clearwater, Florida, on Thursday.

As The Athletic's Matt Gelb notes, Song can remain on Major League Baseball's military list, but must be added to the club's 40-man roster by Opening Day. If the right-hander makes the team following spring training, he will be placed on the 26-man roster and must stay there through the entire season. Otherwise, he must be traded or placed on waivers due to being a Rule 5 selection.

Song made seven starts for the Red Sox' Short-Season A Lowell Spinners affiliate in 2019 — yielding just two runs on 10 hits and five walks spanning 17 innings. Song additionally struck out 19 of his 65 batters faced.

While Song is not currently ranked among the Phillies' top prospects, a strong spring training showing could have his name skyrocket on lists. Meanwhile, the organization's top prospect — fellow right-handed pitcher Andrew Painter — is already making a name for himself, reaching nearly triple-digits on the radar gun in big-league camp.

Song's military duties could have lasted well through the 2023 season, so him being allowed to report to spring training is great news. Optimism is high in Phillies' camp, and the potential addition of the right-hander on the team's Opening Day roster — likely as a bullpen arm — would only help them carry over "Red October" momentum into the new season.