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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

2/29/24 : Today in Spring Training

Minor League Mini Camp :

Bullpens :

Trey Dillard, Christian McGowan, Jean Cabrera, Wesley Moore and Andrew Walling each threw.

Live BP :

Efrain Contreras, Max Lazar, Brandon Beckel and Jaydenn Estanista each threw.

Just Sayin :

Being a former pitcher I tend to focus more on that aspect of the game when observing practices or games, it’s an area of intrigue to me.  The evolution of how the art of pitching is both taught and learned is evident each day I watch - it can be seen in the subtleties of the process.  Often times both pitchers and coaches will review the data capture pads between deliveries to ascertain different elements of a pitch and have discussions before the next pitch is thrown.  It’s interesting how that’s incorporated into the overall teaching/learning process. There’s also interactions on such things as mechanics, release points and deliveries that are simply seen by the naked eye or later in video reviews.

I think that Minor League Pitching Coordinator Travis Hergert and all of the various minor league pitching coaches do an outstanding job of digesting performances and then communicating both with each other as a coaching group and with the players on how to continue to progress.  What’s unique with this group as well is the ongoing interaction with the big league pitching coaches, Brian Kaplan is the major league assistant pitching coach but also serves as Director of Pitching Development for the organization.  The interaction that both he and major league Pitching Coach Caleb Cotham have with Coach Hergert and the minor league staff has established both a consistent baseline of development but also an ongoing collective process of review and improvement.

I see the collective process in action each and every session I watch whether that be bullpens (I truly enjoy watching pen sessions on the seven mounds from behind the catcher and screen albeit have scaled back on that due to feeling out of place doing so), live BP or games.  My write ups of what I observe during spring camp (which perhaps the coaches may read - yeah likely not but on this leap day I’m flattering myself 🤓) are purely visual observations on my part - however I can attest that in each session multiple coaches are also observing.  Just sayin - the teaching/learning process has definitely evolved over the nine years I’ve been writing about player development - from this observers view the current method is done really well by this coaching crew and the pitchers themselves have truly bought in, I know that because they tell me. Communication - that’s good stuff!

Tomorrow is report day for the full minor league spring training camp - on field activities begin on Saturday.

Grapefruit League Game Six :

Phillies 5 Blue Jays 0

Dunedin, Florida

Matt Kroon walked in the fifth inning, stole second and scored on a single by Trea Turner.  Christian Pache hit a home run to right center field in the sixth inning.

The Phillies plated three runs in the seventh inning - Aramis Garcia singled, Cal Stevenson reached on a fielder’s choice, Garcia went to third base.  Simon Muzziotti and Nick Podkul each walked to force in a run.  William Simoneit was hit by a pitch to force in another run.  Carlos De La Cruz scolded a hot shot to shortstop that scored a run as he reached on a fielder’s choice.

At the Plate : 5 R, 5 H, 5 BB, 8 K’s

Trea Turner went 2 for 3 with an RBI.  Christian Pache homered and walked in three plate appearances.  Aramis Garcia continues to smoke the ball, he had a single today and a hard ground out in two AB’s.

Defensive Gems :

Third baseman Scott Kingery made a very nice recovery play on a bad hop grounder to record an out.  His replacement Nick Podkul made multiple plays look easy that really weren’t - showed athleticism and hands.  Left fielder Carlos De La Cruz put a throw right on the second base bag on a ball hit down the line by Vladimir Guerrero Jr but Vladdy was able to avoid the tag for a double.

Pitching Notes :

RH Max Castillo - 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K - 35 pitches - 21 strikes - four seamer - 91 -94 mph, changeup, slider

LH Kolby Allard - 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K - 34 pitches - 19 strikes - four seamer - 90-92 mph, cutter, curve

RH Connor Brogdon - 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 1 K - 13 pitches - 10 strikes - four seamer - 93 -94 mph, change up, cutter

RH Yunior Marte - 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 0 K’s - 16 pitches - 11 strikes - sinker - 96-98 mph, slider, four seamer - 96-97 mph

RH Nick Snyder - 1 perfect IP - 2 K’s - 12 pitches - 8 strikes - four seamer - 93-95 mph, slider, curve

LH David Parkinson - 1.2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB, 2 K’s - faced six hitters - only batter to reach base did so on catcher’s interference - 39 pitches - 24 strikes - very solid outing - in complete command - four seamer - 90-93 mph, changeup, curve

LH Taylor Lehman - 1/3 IP - retired only batter he faced on a groundout - 3 pitches - 3 strikes - four seamer - 93-94 mph

Minor League Mini-Camp Call-Ups for the game :

Pitchers : Andrew Baker, Tristan Garnett, Taylor Lehman, David Parkinson, Cam Wynne

Infielders : Erick Brito, Nikau Pouaka-Grego, Kendall Simmons

Parkinson pitched two innings, Lehman closed out the game.  Brito played subbed in at shortstop and Simmons subbed in at second base.

Grapefruit League record is now 3-1-2

Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

Win line for handshakes 🤓

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