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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

1/30/24 : High Performance Camp - Day Seventeen

Today’s Camp Activities :

Two hours of outdoor batting practice on Ashburn Field - twenty nine players participated.  Once again the easy swing and power of young outfielder Tjayy Walton (19 yrs old) was impressive.  Multiple long flies left the yard.  Another player who caught our attention today was Starlyn Caba - he brings a tremendous amount of energy to the field.  Today when it was the slick fielding shortstop’s turn to shag BP fly balls in the outfield he busted on every ball hit his way and ran down most of them - the sheer joy he plays with is infatuating as is his bright smile every time we say hello - the 18 year old has baseball skills which are evident the first time ya watch him play but those are matched by a bright personality and love of the game enthusiasm - that’s good stuff!

Aidan Miller had a good round of BP from this observer’s view - he’s quick and quiet with his swing but impacts the baseball with velocity and drive, there’s no wasted movement, the nineteen year old has great mechanics - just looks like a big leaguer in the making.  It looked to me like outfielder Emaarion Boyd (20 yrs old) was a tiny bit more closed in his stance set up than I remember from last season - he’s always carried his hands relatively high and gets a really quick path with his swing - I just remember the front leg being a bit more open last year is all - he hit the ball well today as is usually the case - maybe my eyes are deceiving me on the stance or maybe a bit of an adjustment to keep the front shoulder in a tick longer - don’t know - just an observation 👀.

Bullpen day on the seven mounds area  - Jaydenn Estanista, Wilmer Blanco and Alexis De La Cruz each threw nine square sessions to a net target.  Estibenzon Jimenez, Jonathan Petit, Saul Teran, Enrique Segura, Samuel Aldegheri, Christian McGowan, Griff McGarry, Luke Russo, Micah Ottenbreit and Mavis Graves each threw bullpen sessions to catchers.

Scouts Week :

The organization’s amateur scouting team is here this week for meetings and observations, I’ve gotten to know a few of them over the years.  Today I introduced or re-introduced myself to as many as I could.  It’s a part of the baseball profession that takes a great amount of diligence and travel and a unique skillset to recognize talent.  Any chance I get to chat about baseball with folks whose jobs are to identify or teach the game’s skills I relish in it - I have tremendous respect for those aspects of the game.

Also of note is that there are numerous coaches in camp from the Dominican Academy - I checked in with those I know as well - good stuff.

Big League Bullpens :

Jose Alvarado, Nick Nelson, Matt Strahm and Orion Kerkering threw side sessions today on the mounds between Ashburn and Schmidt fields.   Kerkering was letting it fly pretty good, from my vantage point just beyond the catcher the pitch movement and velocity is incredible, even in reduced velo side sessions in January like today.  We knew Orion was legit last January when we saw him throw in that year’s High Performance Camp - this young man (22 yrs old) has the skills to be a top performer.  I think Phillies fans are in for a treat, Orion is gonna be very good for a long time, no doubt in my mind on that.

Back at ‘em tomorrow - as always - Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

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