12/16/22 : Phillies sign Nick Ward to a minor league contract
Updated: Dec 18, 2022
West Chester University and Unionville High School graduate Nick Ward has signed a minor league contract with the Phillies and will report to 2023 minor league spring training. He’s currently playing for the Adelaide Giants in the Australian Baseball League where he has put up stellar numbers - leads the league in hits ( 31 ), doubles ( 7 ), triples ( 2 ) , slugging percentage ( .732 ) and OPS ( 1.195 ) and is second in home runs ( 6 ) , batting average ( .378 ) and OBP ( .463 ) as the lead off hitter for the Southwest Division leading Giants.
Nick played in the independent Frontier League during the 2022 summer season for the Washington Wild Things and posted a league best .478 OBP and was 6th in the league in hitting ( .349 ), 7th in slugging ( .620 ), 2nd in OPS ( 1.098 ) in 82 games ( 368 PA’s ) with 16 doubles, 3 triples, 19 home runs, 61 RBIs and 18 stolen bases. It was his second season playing for the club.
He was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 34th round of the 2018 draft and played in the A’s organization for two seasons. The 27 year old Kennett Square, PA resident will compete for a full season roster spot this spring. He’s earned another chance to play in professional affiliated baseball and looks to make his way up the ladder.
I asked Nick how it felt for all the hard work he’s put in to be rewarded with the opportunity to now play for his hometown team - “Getting the chance to play for my hometown organization is a dream come true to say the least. Obviously you want to take advantage of every opportunity, but this one is just a little extra special.”
Nick’s dad Dan and I played amateur baseball together for many years in the Philadelphia area - he was an original member of the Kennett Mens Senior League which was a hardball league I founded in 1989 and ran for twelve seasons. Dan and wife Clare are very proud parents of their son Nick - perhaps a bit more prouder tonight if that’s possible. The Phillies just signed a really good ball player and an even finer young man - great job and news all around.
From a fan’s view welcome to the Phillies Nick - See ya soon in Clearwater!
Note : I've partnered with Fanatics on Phillies Merchandise - if you would like to help support my website and articles here's a link to order merchandise - I get a small commission on any sales - thanks for the support.