3/20/22 : Today at the Complex
Two 1 PM A level games today on Ashburn and Roberts Fields against the Blue Jays as the AA/AAA groups took the short bus ride over to Dunedin to square off against their counterparts at the Jays complex.
Before the game :
Some of best things we have experienced over the past few years in our coverage of the Phillies minor leaguers on the backfields is the opportunities to meet and get to know the players a bit along with their family members. As my wife Barb and I sat up our chairs in the shade alongside the barriers to watch the game on Roberts Field a familiar face walked by - when he recognized us he greeted us with a smile and fist bump ! It was Darwin Bailey, the proud father of Bailey. We met the Falter family a few years back when Bailey was progressing thru the minors. Swapped some stories and caught up on lost time. Bailey even came down to the complex as he had an early day and was meeting his dad and girlfriend ( they’ve been an item since eighth grade ❤️) for lunch. Was great to chat - it’s cool when we see the young men we’ve written about reach the show but even cooler to become friends with folks.
Met another parent while we waited for the game - Jerry Garnett is in town to watch his son Tristan ( signed as an un-drafted free agent from Cal State Dominguez Hills 7/20/21 ) pitch. He told us about Tristan’s prowess as a multi sport athlete and that he was an outstanding water polo player as well, a goalie in fact. Tristan is a big fella at 6’6” and Jerry explained how his wing span was beneficial in goal. He’s also an accomplished sprint swimmer. The pride in Jerry’s voice was evident in discussing his son - always find that really cool when we meet parents of the players. Gave him my website card to follow along and also told him about our annual digests - I think we’ve made another friend, found out that Tristan attended Westview High School in Portland - Mick Abel attended Jesuit High in Portland, the two schools are powerhouse baseball programs in the City of Roses.
The Games :
Bounced back and forth between fields so didn’t see all of the action. Connor Brogdon was down from big league camp and opened the game on Ashburn Field, he recorded a couple outs and walked a batter. He had the third out taken care of but got squeezed by the umpire on a 3-2 pitch who called it ball four, the inning was rolled thereafter. Connor threw well.
Rafael Marchan was taking AB’s each inning for the Phillies squad on Ashburn field. It was interesting that Chris Burke played center field in the contest. The 20 year old Australian is primarily a catcher but has played center field as well in the Australian Baseball League.
Eighteen year old Yemal Flores had a good day on Roberts Field, he had two knocks ( double & single ) and an RBI. Nineteen year old Leandro Pineda also doubled in the Roberts contest. LHP Tristan Garnett threw two scoreless frames and RHP Malik Binns impressed in a scoreless inning - didn’t have a speed gun but our naked eye view told us he was bringing the heat 🔥. RH Carlos Betancourt was tagged for a two run homer but he impressed with his velo and slider, we like the 21 year old’s repertoire.
Lefty Matt Osterberg had a good outing on Ashburn field and RH Alex Garbrick was popping the mitt in good form as well.
Tomorrow is a camp day at the complex, it will be a light day of workouts, no intra squad game will be played.
The Big Boys :
Atlanta defeated the Phillies in Port Charlotte by a 5-1 count. Kyle Gibson threw two scoreless innings in his first start of the spring. The Braves scored all five of their runs in the 8th inning. RH James McArthur threw two scoreless innings s well.
RF Simon Muzziotti singled to score 1B Darick Hall ( doubled ) in the 5th inning. The Phillies had four hits in the game, Bryson Stott and Johan Rojas also singled.
The Phillies Grapefruit League record stands at 1-1-1 after three games, they play the Yankees tomorrow in Tampa at 1 PM - if you have the MLB APP the game is being televised by the YES network.
Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️