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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

2/6/22 : Position Player Depth - 1st Base

Second in a series on minor league position player depth - if ya missed part one on Catchers here is a link -

By mid month there will be multiple selected/invited minor league players at the Complex either participating in a continuation of what has been an annual formalized minor league spring mini camp ( we first observed it in 2018 ) or on rehab assignments. The full Minor league spring training is slated to begin the first week of March with pitchers and catchers initially reporting followed by position players a few days later.

Who knows when the big leaguers get their start - that’s on ongoing lockdown.

AAA Lehigh Valley :

Darrick Hall - 26 years old - 2016 14th round draft selection - Dallas Baptist University - has been a consistent run producer throughout his career, is an aggressive hitter who attacks pitches when he’s going well. Very powerful swing. Is a very solid defender at first base, very good hands and arm. Has shown he can also play corner outfield albeit range will be limited. I’ve long touted his skill sets as big league caliber regular and still believe that’s the case. Would also be able to contribute as a big league reserve that can deliver runs off the bench as well.

Luke Miller - - 25 years old - 2018 22nd round draft selection - Indiana University. Luke was amongst the 2021 organization leaders in home runs with 13 despite playing in a limited role ( 277 AB’s ) at Reading. He’s a smart baseball player, well schooled fundamentally. We enjoy watching him play as he rarely ever makes a mistake. He could either return to Reading or move up a notch, can play other positions than 1B, we’ve seen him at 3B and the outfield, versatility is definitely a plus.

Madison Stokes - 25 years old - 2018 10th round draft selection - University of South Carolina - had a very solid ‘21 season with Reading. Strong defender who played all four infield spots plus the two outfield corners during the season. Offensively had 20 doubles, 2 triples, 11 home runs and 40 RBIs in 94 games ( 342 AB’s ). An all around player who’s intelligent and team oriented, winning demeanor who won’t back away from challenges. Should be in the mix for a role with Lehigh Valley in spring camp.

AA Reading :

Aldrem Corredor -signed as a minor league free agent 1/4/22 & assigned to Reading roster. He’s 26 years old and is a left handed hitter and thrower from Miranda, Venezuela. Last season he played for Harrisburg at the AA level in the Nationals organization and hit .257/.328/.406 in 92 games ( 323 AB’s ) with 19 doubles, 1 triple, 9 home runs and 52 RBIs. He was originally signed by the Nationals in 2012. Known as a contact hitter with good fundamental skills, will get the chance to compete for playing time at Reading at first base, DH and perhaps left field.

Vito Friscia - 25 years old - 2019 40th round draft selection - Hofstra University. Had a very solid 2021 campaign primarily with Jersey Shore posting a .378 on base percentage which was the second best mark in the minor league organization ( for those with at least 315 plate appearances ). He’s “Philly Tough” meaning he shows up each and every day expecting to perform even if being a little nicked up. We think he’s in the mix to open the 2022 season as a regular in the Reading lineup in a DH/1B/C multi role.

DJ Stewart - 22 years old - 2017 39th round draft selection - Westminster Christian Academy, St. Louis, MO. DJ had a strong year during 2021 in regards to power numbers, playing time and run production. He appeared in 94 games with Clearwater and Jersey Shore compiling 358 AB’s and hit 13 doubles, 3 triples and 14 home runs. Defensively can play 1B,3B and LF. He is a very strong young man who generates high velocity bat speed, can hit the ball a ton. Generally puts the ball in play. We think he should be headed to AA level Reading as a lineup regular out of spring camp.

McCarthy Tatum - 25 years old - 2019 10th round draft selection - Fresno State - began the ‘21 season with Reading and was transferred to Jersey Shore in July in his first full season of play. He played 3B primarily defensively but also saw time at 1B, RF and LF. Good defender at every position, strong fundamentals. A return engagement with AA Reading out of spring camp seems the likely target.

High A Jersey Shore :

Rixon Wingrove - 21 years old - signed as an international free agent 4/20/18 - Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia - played his first full season schedule in 2021 with Clearwater - 11 home runs and 39 RBIs in 306 AB’s. Swing can get long on the pull side at times a left handed hitter. We saw him initially on the backfields in 2019 GCL play where he was more adept at taking outside pitches to left field, ability to do so is there, has big power to all fields. Very outgoing personality, plays hard, competes to win in an “old school” approach - high intensity. Should compete in spring camp for a starting spot with High A Jersey Shore.

Matt Goodheart - 23 years old - signed as an un-drafted free agent - 7/20/21 - University of Arkansas - played in eight FCL games and posted a .381/.458/.429 slash line in 21 AB’s. We saw him in action on a couple of occasions including in Fall Instructs, classic left handed swing, makes good contact and seems to be a very good defensive first baseman. He should be in the mix for a full season roster assignment in spring camp, likely Jersey Shore.

Low A Clearwater :

Felix Reyes - will be 21 years old near the end of March - signed as an international free agent - 2/22/20 - Bani, Dominican Republic. We were in the stands on July 15th, 2021 when Felix hit his first professional home run at Carpenter Complex in a FCL contest. The ball was smoked and got out of the massive backfield in a hurry. The skill set is raw but the talent is evident. He’s a big fella at 6’4” - shows athleticism and ability, to date plays primarily corner outfielder. He took reps at first base - footwork coaching is needed to continue to progress. Like what we’ve seen in small samples, hands seem quick, bat speed evident and desire high to succeed, sounds like a formula for success. A full season assignment out of the gate to Clearwater is a very real possibility.

Edgar Made - 22 years old - signed as an international free agent - 7/8/16 - Bani, Dominican Republic. Edgar had a very productive 2019 season as he hit .314 in 48 GCL games ( 188 AB’s ) and was positioned for seemingly a full season assignment thereafter, the 2020 layoff hurt him as it did many players without opportunities to work. He accumulated 136 AB’s in 2021 primarily with the Threshers in a part time role. Is a switch hitter who’s capable of playing all four infield positions plus the outfield, we liked the bat in 2019 we saw on the backfields, short and quick thru the ball. Should compete for a full season role at the A level in spring camp.

Kervin Pichardo - 20 years old - signed as an un-drafted free agent 6/24/19 - Bronx, New York - played in 35 games ( FCL, Clearwater and Jersey Shore ) in 2021 - 6 doubles, 2 triples and 2 home runs in 105 PA’s with a .476 OBP as he drew 28 walks. We saw an ability to barrel the ball and drive it with authority along with a plate discipline to not get himself out. As a fielder he played 1B, 2B and 3B, also played SS in the DSL. We saw him also take reps in the outfield during extended spring. Angular build, quick and athletic. Envision a full season roster assignment out of spring camp with Clearwater - good skills, could blossom.

Jordan Viars ( OF - we will chat about him in the up-coming OF article ) , Micah Yonamine ( C ), Oscar Gonzalez ( C ) Arturo DeFreitas ( C ) & Juan Aparicio ( C ) are other players who likely will see some time at first base in 2022 as well at either Jersey Shore or Clearwater.

Florida Complex League :

Erick Brito - 19 years old - signed as an international free agent 11/29/18 - Ciudad Guayana, Venezuela - had an outstanding 2021 DSL season posting a .327 batting average in 153 AB’s - earned him a spot in Fall Instructs camp where we saw him play. Erick is a slender young man who bats exclusively from the right side, decent bat to ball skills shown in Fall Camp - we saw a small sample size but plays multiple defensive positions - should see some continued time at 1B as one of them. He will turn 20 near end of May, we’d expect that he will be in extended spring camp with an eye towards Florida Complex League play. Erick is fellow Phillie Daniel Brito’s cousin.

Albert Jerez - 20 years old - signed as an international free agent - 5/8/18 - Acarigua, Venezuela. He appeared in 15 FCL games in 2021 after playing the 2018 & 2019 seasons in the DSL - the majority of the ‘21 summer was spent on the IL. Slender built middle infielder with good defensive actions, also saw time at first base, will turn 21 in May - likely returns for a season of FCL action.

Randy Vasquez - 19 years old - signed as an international free agent - 7/2/19 - San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic. First saw him in action in 2021 Fall Instructs, impressed with bat speed and ability to drive the baseball, he hit a long home run over the left center field fence on Ashburn field in a scrimmage game. Is a left handed hitter. Played in 40 2021 DSL games accumulating 140 AB’s - plays all four infield positions defensively. It’s likely he is in extended spring training and on an FCL roster for the coming summer.

Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

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