12/29/2020 : A Milestone Day & other notes
Today is my 61st birthday ... a milestone event 😂. I consider any birthday from this one going forward a milestone considering the year we’ve experienced 🤦♂️. I share the honor of a 12/29 birthdate with fellow baseball “associates” Theo Epstein and Odubel Herrera. Of course I’m an unofficial baseball associate but I like to think of myself as the official unofficial “Phillies Minor League Correspondent” 🧐. Humor me ... it’s my birthday 😜.
Australian Winter League play has been furloughed a bit by COVID concerns. Melbourne and Canberra played a couple games on the 25th and 26th with Phillies minor leaguers Chris Burke, Josh Tols and Luke Leftwich seeing game action for Melbourne. The teams split the two games ... ex Phillie Damek Tomscha has been an early standout with a couple home runs and ten total bases for Melbourne.
Most of the Phillies Adelaide Giants players they’ve sent to Australia are now out of quarantine and are practicing with the team or have one more day left before being able to leave the hotel.
Danny Brito has performed well in the Venezuelan Winter League with a .300/.333/.456 AVG/OBP/SLG slash line and a .789 OPS in 90 AB’s for Zulia with 3 home runs and 5 doubles. Defensively he’s played both second and third base.
Outfielder Jadiel Sanchez has held his own against older and more experienced competition for team RA12 in the Puerto Rican Winter League. The team roster purposely consists of younger players and is sponsored by former major leaguer Roberto Alomar. The nineteen year old Sanchez has been the teams regular right fielder and has gained invaluable experience.
Darick Hall had a productive 20 games for Caneros de los Mochis in the Mexican Winter League. He has finished his stint there and returned home but was able to garner 70 AB’s with 4 home runs and 18 RBIs while gaining defensive experience in both left and right field.
RHP Fernando Lozano went 3-0 with a 1.83 ERA in 11 games ( 19.2 IP ) for Aguilas de Mexicali. The soon to be 21 year old is 8-0 in game decisions credited to him since the 2019 GCL season. An under the radar one to keep an eye on.
Twenty four year old RHP Ramon Rosso excelled in the Dominican Winter League . He struck out 31 batters while walking just 6 in 26 IP ( 7 games - 6 as a starter ). He’s motivated to continue his recent success this spring in training camp.
It’s still apparently TBD as to whether 2021 Spring Training Camp will begin on time and for that matter the upcoming big league season as well. As of now it seems plans are for that to be the case.
If there’s no scheduled delay I’d expect Florida ST camps to begin in “lockdown” mode meaning no visitors within the complexes. It’s also likely that major league camp would be purposely separated from minor league camp with the big leaguers going first and the minor league camps not starting till the major leaguers’ camp concludes. That approach is certainly allowed for by the new PDA ( Player Development Agreement ) game limits for the minor leagues ( AAA - 144 games, AA - 138 games, A - 132 games ) albeit if a delay does occur the 2021 minor league season would likely be reduced even further.
As for the ST Grapefruit League games - expect limited ticket sales - FLA governance allows for attendance however MLB will likely be more responsible in the matter as to how many fans can be in the stadiums.
Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️