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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

12/11/22  : Annual Phillies Minor League Player Notes - Pitchers - Part 13

I’ve entitled this series “Annual Phillies Minor League Player Notes” and will break down the presentations into defensive categories.  I intend to offer notes on every player I watched perform this past season that finished the 2022 season with the organization.

The initial set of articles was on catchers - we chatted about 18 receivers and posted three articles.  The next group was on Infielders - we chronicled 40 different players broken down into five postings.  The third series of articles ( a total of five ) were on 36 outfielders. I will list below the article links to each of the group notes previously published if ya missed them.

The next group of articles is Pitchers - I’ll discuss 133 different hurlers broken down into twenty postings ( alphabetical order ) hopefully finishing before Christmas :

Group One : Mick Abel, Jose Acuna, Mike Adams, Samuel Aldegheri, Aidan Anderson, Chase Antle, Mark Appel -

Group Two : Erubiel Armenta, Konnor Ash, Andrew Baker, Albertus Barber, Carlos Betancourt, Trevor Bettencourt, Malik Binns -

Group Three : Josh Bortka, Andrew Brown, Blake Brown, Jean Cabrera, Eiberson Castellano, Starlyn Castillo, Joel Cesar -

Group Four : Edward Chirinos, Ty Collins, Gabriel Cotto, Hans Crouse, Jack Dallas, Chris Devenski, Nick Duron -

Group Five : Colton Eastman, Kent Emmanuel, Jaydenn Estanista, Braeden Fausnaught, Jordan Fowler, Carlos Francisco, Jace Fry -

Group Six : Alex Garbrick, Eric Garcia, Tristan Garnett, Drew Garrett, Maikel Garrido, Jeffrey German, Kyle Glogoski -

Group Seven : Ofreidy Gomez, Luis Gonzalez, Mavis Graves, Daniel Harper, Buddy Hayward, Josh Hendrickson, Jonh Henriquez -

Group Eighth : Jonathan Hennigan, Cristian Hernandez, Jakob Hernandez, Maxwell Hernandez, Jonathan Hughes, Sam Jacobsak, Estibenzon Jimenez -

Group Nine : Damon Jones, Nathan Karaffa, Orion Kettering, Michael Kelly, Keylan Kilgore, Taylor Lehman, Adam Leverett -

Group Ten : Ethan Lindow, Victor Lopez, Fernando Lozano, Alex McFarlane, Rafael Marcano, Brian Marconi, Jordi Martinez -

Group Eleven : James Marvel, Gunner Mayer, James McArthur, Tommy McCollum, Griff McGarry, Christian McGowan, Tyler McKay -

Group Twelve : Jake McKenna, Alex McKenney, Oswald Medina, Daniel Mejia, Jhordany Mezquita, Erik Miller, McKinley Moore -

Group Thirteen : Francisco Morales, Vinny Nittoli, Braedon Ogle, Matt Osterberg, Micah Ottenbreit, Andrew Painter, Jose Pena Jr

Group Fourteen : Jack Perkins, Jonathan Petit, Tyler Phillips, Nicoly Pina, Dominic Pipkin, Michael Plassmeyer, Danyony Pulido

Group Fifteen : Jesus Querales, Alex Rao, Carlos Reyes, Pedro Reyes, Mason Ronan, Jason Ruffcorn

Group Sixteen : Matt Russell, Christopher Sanchez, Rodolfo Sanchez, Andrew Schultz, Brett Schulze, Tayler Scott

Group Seventeen : Matt Seelinger, Enrique Segura, Eduar Segovia, Ryan Sherriff, Noah Skirrow, Christopher Soriano

Group Eighteen : Billy Sullivan, Tom Sutera, Manuel Urias, Wilson Valdez Jr, Spencer Van Scoyoc, Victor Vargas

Group Nineteen : Guissepe Velasquez, Ezequiel Ventura, Andrew Walling, Zach Warren, Chase Webster,Jared Wetherbee

Group Twenty :  Danny Wilkinson, JP Woodward, Cam Wynne, Gabriel Yanez, Braden Zarbnisky

So we continue - the thirteenth article in the series on pitchers  ⚾️🤓.

Thanks to Matt Winkleman ( Phillies Minor Thoughts ) for his diligent efforts in detailing most of the speed gun readings.

Francisco Morales - RHP - Birthdate : 10/27/99 - signed as an international free agent - 7/2/16 - San Juan de los Morros, Venezuela - This Fan’s View - no one doubts the quality of the pitch repertoire that Francisco possesses, his slider is truly major league plus and his capabilities of fastball velocity in the mid to upper nineties are what make the well liked young man so intriguing.  The club moved him exclusively to the bullpen this past season so that he could focus primarily on the slider and it got him to the big leagues in May.  The primary ssues that Francisco has battled throughout his career are both control and command related.  Even when we first saw him on the backfields and marveled at the “stuff” he was inconsistent in his ability to throw strikes.  This year the player development emphasis in pitching has been on trusting your abilities and letting pitch movement override necessarily “pitching to spots” which for Francisco is a great approach - however finding consistency remained a 2022 season long process.  He was very good in the Arizona Fall League ( 9 appearances ( 10 2/3 IP ) with a 0.00 ERA - 17 K’s & 7 BB ) - took it as a challenge to prove that he’s a big league back end weapon. We’ve believed all along he’s gonna get there - spring camp should afford a long look for him.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 92 to 96 mph - max 97-99 ), slider ( 84 to 89 mph ) and change up ( 86 to 89 mph ). - 2023 Projection - will be in big league spring camp - can make the big club with a good showing - we think he’s gonna blossom into a regular role in the show, one of our favorites.

Vinny Nittoli - 32 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 11/11/90 - acquired from Blue Jays 8/31/22 in exchange for catcher Karl Ellison - This Fan’s View - saw him in person at the complex in October during a live BP session - has a funky delivery ( a bit of Gene Garber in it ) where he turns his back to the hitter and then cross fires - really seems deceptive, ball remains hidden till last minute of release.  We saw quite a few sliders ( his feature pitch ) with good side action movement which set up his fastball as a pitch that jumped out on hitters, especially if they anticipate the breaking ball.  Threw two scoreless innings in 2022 with the Phillies in September - posted a 3.81 ERA in 37 appearances ( 52 IP ) with 64 K’s and only 14 walks at the AAA level for Scranton Wilkes Barre ( Yankees ), Buffalo ( Jays ) and Lehigh Valley ( Phillies ) in the minors.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 92 to 93 mph - max 93 ), curve ( 81 to 83 mph ) and slider ( 83 to 84 mph ).  2023 Projection - will be in big league spring camp competing for a job - will pitch for Lehigh Valley if not in the show.

Braedon Ogle - 25 years old - LHP - Birthdate : 7/30/97 - acquired in trade with Pirates 7/30/21 for catcher Abrahan Gutierrez - was Pittsburgh’s 4th round draft choice - 2016 - Jensen Beach HS, Jensen Beach, FL -  This Fan’s View -  made 36 appearances ( 35 2/3 IP ) for Lehigh Valley this past season posting a 5.30 ERA with 24 K’s and 21 walks.  Struggled to find the strike zone with the Iron Pigs over two seasons - had a strong month of July ( 5 games - 5 IP - 1.80 ERA ) but otherwise it was a battle. Big arm lefty - if can find the command of his two pitches via consistent release point could bump up.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 92 to 95 mph - max 97 ) and slider ( 80 to 86 mph ) - 2023 Projection - elected minor league free agency

Matt Osterberg - 23 years old - LHP - Birthdate : 4/21/99 - 2021 15th round draft selection - St. Cloud State, St. Cloud State, MN -  This Fan’s View - a lefty strike thrower with movement and command of three pitches.  Made 22 appearances ( 12 starts ) with Clearwater - 63 2/3 IP - 3.25 ERA, 52 K’s, 15 BB - 1.41 WHIP.  Made a one game cameo appearance for Reading - 1 1/3 scoreless innings.  He served as multi inning hurler during the year as either an opener or reliever - went three to four innings in 15 of his appearances.  Was stellar in August ( 5 games - 14 IP - 13 K’s - 2 BB - 0.64 ERA - 0.79 WHIP ).  Had a very solid season - one to build upon.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 86 to 92 mph - max 93 ), slider ( 76 to 86 mph ) and change up ( 81 to 86 mph ).  - 2023 Projection - a roster spot with either Reading ( we think he’s ready ) or Jersey Shore out of spring camp.

Micah Ottenbreit - 19 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 5/7/03 - 2021 4th round draft selection - Trenton High School , Trenton, MI - This Fan’s View - earned a rotation spot with Clearwater out of spring camp - made two starts and then went on the IL - had Tommy John surgery in late April - worked with the rehab team in Clearwater thereafter.  We got to chat with him a bit during the summer - pleasant young man - very motivated to return - had advanced to throwing flat ground catches in the fall.  Saw him pitch in 2021 Fall Instructs and again in ‘22 ST, great stuff, form and mechanics - well schooled - three pitch mix with FB generally in the 89-92 range but flashes a couple ticks higher ( will increase as body matures ), also has a curve and changeup.  He reminds me a-lot of former Phillie Andy Ashby from way back in the day.  We think that when he gets back on the mound he’s going to do very well and will progress quickly - a big league talent. The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 87 to 93 mph - max 94 ), change up ( 81 to 86 mph ) and curve ( 75 to 81 mph ). - 2023 Projection - possible mid summer return to game action

Andrew Painter - 19 years old -  RHP - Birthdate : 4/10/03 - 2021 1st round draft selection - Calvary Christian, Fort Lauderdale, FL - This Fan’s View  - named the 2022 Paul Owens Award winner, the minor league pitcher of the year by Baseball America and the Pitching Prospect of the Year by MLB.  The accolades were definitely earned - Andrew had an excellent year start to finish, I remember in Spring Training a scout from another club telling me how dominant he was in an outing against the Blue Jays - three up and three down ( all K’s ) in just 12 pitches.  He then blew thru Low A Clearwater ( 1.40 ERA - 69 K’s - 38 2/3 IP ) - was even better at High A Jersey Shore ( 0.98 ERA in 36 2/3 IP - 49 K’s ) and more than solid at AA Reading ( 2.54 ERA in 28 1/3 IP - 37 K’s ).  As a 19 year old he posted an overall 6.20 K/BB ratio.  There’s a potential of four plus big league pitches, by the way he’s also a very approachable and pleasant person.   The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 93 to 100 mph - max 101 ), change up ( 85 to 89 mph ), slider ( 78 to 86 mph ) and curve ( 74 to 82 mph ) 2023 Projection - will be in 2023 major league spring training - from my perspective has a fighter’s chance to earn a roster spot. At the least would seemingly be in line to start 2023 with Reading trending upward.

Jose Pena Jr - 19 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 7/8/03 - 2021 6th round draft selection - Tampa Prep, Tampa, FL - This Fan’s View - can spin the baseball at high rates, this summer the fastball generally sat 88 to 92 but we’ve seen him touch 94/95 both last fall and in extended spring.  The high spins come on the curve ball with his change up used to filter hitters off of the heater.  He’s a bit too hard on himself at times, wants badly to succeed and is a very good competitor.  Where he’s struggled is control - got into self made jams with walks, hit batters and wild pitches.  As he matures both physically and emotionally what we’ve seen in baseball talent are deliveries that have significant movement.   It’s akin to lefty movement even though he’s a right hander - don’t see a lot of straight pitches from him.  Key will be learning how to harness that, add strength, mental toughness and adaptability - if can accomplish that can do quite well.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 88 to 94 mph - max 95 ), change up ( 81 to 83 mph ) and curve ( 74 to 79 mph ). - 2023 Projection - will be in the hunt for a Clearwater roster spot in spring camp - will pitch half the season as a teenager.

Left to right - top to bottom - Andrew Painter, Vinny Nittoli, Micah Ottenbreit, Jose Pena Jr, Braeden Ogle, Francisco Morales & Matt Osterberg - photos by George Youngs Jr, Mark Wylie and Cheryl Pursell

Prior Reports - Catchers, Infielders & Outfielders :

Catchers :

Group 1 : Jack Conley, Arturo DeFreitas, Jordan Dissin, Vito Friscia, Herbert Iser and Ryan Leitch. -

Group 2 : Rafael Marchan, Nick Matera, Adony Mejia, Andrik Nava, Rickardo Perez & Jackie Pertuz  -

Group 3 : Anthony Quirion, Caleb Ricketts, Leanardo Rondon, Donny Sands, Gustavo Sosa & Micah Yonamine -

Infielders :

Group One : Matt Alifano, Alexeis Azuaje, Jamari Baylor, William Bergolla, Erick Brito, Johan Camargo,Ali Castillo, Chad Castillo - article posted 11/14/22 - link -

Group Two : Aldrem Corredor, Aroon Escobar, Diego Gonzalez, Sal Gozzo, Jonathan Guzman, Darick Hall, Lou Helmig, Otto Kemp  - article posted 11/15/22 - link -

Group Three : Scott Kingery, Hao Yu Lee, Casey Martin, Nick Maton, Freylin Minyety, Cole Moore, Yairo Munoz, Josh Ockimey - article posted 11/16/22 - link -

Group Four : Nikau Pouaka-Grego, Ty Penner, Wendell Rijo, Brian Rincon, Daniel Robertson, Jehisbert Sevilla, Kendall Simmons, Marco Soto - article posted 11/17/22 - link -

Group Five : Madison Stokes, McCarthy Tatum, Will Toffey, Nicolas Torres, Randy Vasquez, Kevin Vicuña, Uziel Viloria, Rixon Wingrove -

Outfielders :

Group One : Jorge Bonifacio, Emaarion Boyd, Chris Burke, Jared Carr, Justin Crawford, Carlos De La Cruz, Jefferson Encarnacion -

Group Two : Ezra Farmer, Cade Fergus, Yemal Flores, Wilfredo Flores, Jorge Garcia, Yhoswar Garcia, Dalton Guthrie, Darium Gutierrez -

Group Three : Raylin Heredia, Dakota Kotowski, Matt Kroon, Marcus Lee Sang, Simon Muzziotti, Jhailyn Ortiz, Jerffson Pena -

Group Four : Dustin Peterson, Leandro Pineda, Baron Radcliff, Felix Reyes, Gabriel Rincones Jr, Albert Rodriquez, Johan Rojas -

Group Five : Ricardo Rosario, Troy Schreffler, Chris Sharpe, Gavin Tonkel, Jordan Viars, Justin Williams, Ethan Wilson -

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