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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

11/6/23 : Phillies claim LHP Josh Fleming from Rays

The Phillies have claimed LHP Josh Fleming off waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays. Additionally, LHP Michael Plassmeyer and RHP Erich Uelmen were outrighted to Lehigh Valley (AAA).

Josh Fleming - 27 years old - drafted in 7th round of the 2017 draft from Webster University, MO

Was 2-0 with a 4.70 ERA in 12 appearances (three starts) with Tampa accumulating 51.2 IP - 1.45 WHIP and .281 BAA - 63 % strike ratio.  Over his four year major league career with the Rays has a 19-13 record with a 4.88 ERA in 55 appearances (22 starts) with a 1.42 WHIP.  Was 5-0 with a 2.78 ERA in 7 games (5 starts) totaling 32.1 IP in the 2020 season in which Tampa went to the World Series.

Fleming was placed on the  IL this season on 6/2/23 with what was initially called left elbow soreness, but an MRI revealed cartilage buildup on his elbow bone as well as inflammation, he was activated on 8/11/23 after a rehab assignment from 7/22/23 with the FCL Rays and AAA level Durham Bulls.

He’s a sinker baller, primary weapon is a 90-94 mph sinker and a low 80’s changeup.  Has a mid 80’s slider  and a high 70’s curveball.  The sinker has heavy action and generates ground balls. The change also generates ground balls - dives down out of the zone. The slider has a sweeping action.  Fleming had an American League leading 63.5% groundball rate for pitchers with 30+ innings thrown in 2020.  When he’s right his sinker gets +4” of vertical movement which is in line with Framber Valdez (+4.0”) but also when he’s at his best the pitch really shines with  +3.7” of horizontal movement.

He’s an athletic pitcher that can command his fastball and pitch off of it.  Will get a shot in spring training at this point to earn a role.

Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

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