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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

12/14/22 : Annual Phillies Minor League Player Notes - Pitchers - Part Sixteen

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 sixteenth 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.

Matt Russell - 23 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 3/28/99 - signed as an un-drafted free agent - 7/21/21 - Missouri State University - This Fan’s View - made 18 appearances ( 16 starts ) for Jersey Shore in 2022 posting a 4.74 ERA in 81 2/3 IP with 69 K’s and 35 walks in his first full season of minor league play.  Had three outstanding starts in June recording a 2.65 ERA over 17 IP with 12  K’s and only four walks.   Was very good in a split game ( suspended on 5/1 and concluded later in the summer ) where in essence he started the same contest twice 🤓 and pitched a combined 8 innings punching out 12 batters and walking three. He can overpower hitters with his fastball, is fun to watch as he will alter his delivery ala Nestor Cortes and throw in different leg kicks, spins and even arm angles to throw off the hitters.  He can push the fastball consistently in the mid nineties and flashes higher - has a four pitch mix.  Like most young hurlers needs to reel in control and command - establish a consistent release point.  The stuff can play at the upper levels in this observer’s opinion.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 92 to 94 mph - max 96 ), slider ( 83 to 89 mph ), cutter ( 86 to 88 mph ), change up ( 79 to 86 mph ) and curve ( 72 to 73 mph ). 2023 Projection - will be part of the Reading staff out of spring training camp.

Christopher Sanchez - 25 years old - LHP - Birthdate : 12/12/96 - acquired in trade with Rays 11/20/19 for INF Curtis Mead - signed as an international free agent by Rays 7/15/13 - La Romana, Dominican Republic - This Fan’s View - appeared in 15 big league games ( 3 starts ) in 2022 accumulating 40 IP - 35 K’s, 17 walks - 1.38 WHIP - also made 15 appearances at Lehigh Valley ( 14 starts ) posting a 3.14 ERA in 57 1/3 IP with 58 K’s and 20 walks - 1.19 WHIP.  We’ve seen him pitch up close on multiple occasions at the complex - has major league quality stuff - fastball and slider especially - power arsenal.  From my perspective he can be a bullpen weapon in particular as we’ve seen in times past the heater reach upper nineties in shorter stints  - scaling back to two pitches and letting it eat as a reliever is a role we think he can excel at in the show.  Is out of minor league options now so a roster decision will be forced at the end of spring camp.   The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 90 to 95 mph - max 96 ), slider ( 83 to 86 mph ) and change up ( 83 to 87 mph ). -  2023 Projection - will be in big league spring camp competing for a roster spot.

Rodolfo Sanchez - 22 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 1/12/00 - acquired in trade with Rays 11/9/20 - signed as an international free agent by Rays 7/2/16 - Bani, Dominican Republic - This Fan’s View - excelled with Clearwater in 2022 - 30 appearances - 40 1/3 IP - 3.12 ERA with 51 K’s and 20 walks - promoted to Jersey Shore on 8/1/22 - appeared in 11 games to finish the year ( 12 1/3 IP ) - struggled with the BlueClaws with control ( when we watched his JS outings appeared to be overthrowing ).  He’s got a live arm - fastball generally sits mid 90’s - gets arm side run on both the fastball and slider ( has a slurve look to it ).  He’s not the tallest fella at 5’10” but generates a lot of arm speed and torque with his delivery however it’s far from a max effort style.  Really uses his legs well in driving to the plate.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 91 to 95 mph - max 96 ), slider ( 81 to 87 mph ) and change up ( 83 to 89  mph ). 2023 Projection - a return to Jersey Shore out of spring camp with Reading as an in season target.

Andrew Schultz - 25 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 7/31/97 - 2019 6th round draft selection - University of Tennessee - This Fan’s View -  has a short arm delivery where the baseball gives the appearance to the hitter of getting to the plate even quicker - that’s huge when the velocity is already in the upper nineties to 100 mph range to begin with.  When he’s able to repeat his mechanics and stay in the strike zone Andrew can dominate hitters - he struck out 62 batters in 44 2/3 IP this past season with Jersey Shore & Reading - actually pitched better at the AA level than High A - a 2.45 ERA in 14 games ( 14 2/3 IP ) but a 1.84 WHIP.   The slider is a put away weapon - as the summer progressed he got a better feel for it. 2022 was his first year back from a two year absence from pitching ( 2020 lost season & 2021 Tommy John surgery recovery ).  That being considered this coming season could be an even more successful one as it’s not unusual for the first year back to include some command struggles.  He’s got a big league arm and the makeup to pitch in high pressure innings - The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 95 to 100 mph - max 100 ), slider ( 84 to 93 mph ) and change up ( 87 to 88 mph ). - 2023 Projection - likely starts with Reading in 2023 but could have higher level impact thereafter - we think he will be in major league spring training camp.

Brett Schulze - 25 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 11/24/97 - 2019 7th round draft selection - University of Minnesota - This Fan’s View - Brett  had Tommy John surgery and missed the entirety of the 2021 season - in fact he hadn’t appeared in a pro game since pitching for Williamsport in 2019.  We saw multiple bullpens and live BP sessions this spring and early summer at the complex before he returned to game action on July 2nd with the FCL Phillies, from there he moved up the chain pitching at Clearwater and Jersey Shore before finishing at Reading and then pitching in the Arizona Fall League.  He’s a power pitcher with his fastball sitting in the mid nineties and he has shown the ability to reach the upper ranges - he’s tightened up his secondary offerings - has a sweeping slider with a sharp curve ball in reserve to use against lefties.  Brett pitched very well this summer - he had a stellar month of August  - a 0.96 ERA in 9 1/3 IP with 12 K’s and 6 walks.   He pitched in 8 Arizona Fall League games - 1.08 ERA ( 8 1/3 IP ) with a 0.96 WHIP.  Has big league skills and may just pitch himself into making his major league debut this coming year - when he’s commanding the zone he’s a weapon coming out of the pen.  The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 93 to 97 mph - max 97 ), slider ( 82 to 85 mph ) and curve ( 74 to 82 mph ) - 2023 Projection  - likely starts with Reading in 2023 but could have higher level impact thereafter - we think he will be in major league spring training camp.

Tayler Scott - 30 years old - RHP - Birthdate : 6/1/92 - claimed off waivers from Padres 9/14/22 - This Fan’s View - made 4 appearances with Lehigh Valley after being acquired. Was the 5th round draft selection of the Cubs in 2011 from high school in Scottsdale, Arizona. He spent 2020 and 2021 with the Hiroshima Carp of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball and came back to North America for 2022, signing a minor league deal with the Padres.  His family moved to the United States from South Africa and he was also a standout soccer player for Notre Dame Prep in high school.  Has pitched in the Cubs, Mariners and Padres organizations - made 21 major league appearances ( 13 in 2019 and 8 in 2022 ).  He is a strike thrower with a three pitch mix - pitches to contact.   The speed gun : fastball ( sits in a range of 92 to 94 mph - max 95 ), slider ( 84 to 89 mph ) and change up ( 87 to 89 mph ) - data from Baseball Savant - 2023 Projection - in big league spring camp with a shot to make the roster else has minor league options and can be sent to Lehigh Valley.

Left to right - top to bottom - Tayler Scott, Rodolfo Sanchez, Brett Schulze, Christopher Sanchez, Andrew Schultz and Matt Russell - photos by Cheryl Pursell, George Youngs Jr and Mark Wylie

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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