TOP 5 LAST 5 is a look back on each MLB team and sees how each of the top 5 draft picks since 2008 fared this past season. While some players have reached the major leagues and flourished like Chris Sale, Buster Posey and Craig Kimbrel, some players have seen their dreams of playing in the show fall by the wayside as they are no longer in the game or playing abroad or in independent leagues. Every player flashed some sort of potential otherwise they wouldn't have been selected in the first 5 or 6 rounds. The Philadelphia Phillies are up now.
Originally drafted as a shortstop out of high school, 1st round pick Anthony Hewitt went 24th overall to Philly to begin their 2008 draft. After 2 years of horrible defense at 3rd base, he was moved to right field where his strong arm would still play. In 2012 Hewitt spent the entire season in High A Clearwater where he would play in 108 games. In 437 plate appearances he posted a 241/281/387/668 line with 30 extra base hits, 13 HR, 50 RBI, 41 runs scored and 13 stolen bases. His approach at the plate though, is horrendous. He racked up 136 strikeouts on the year to go with only 18 walks all year. That's good for a 7.56 strikeout to walk ratio. His defense also fell of a cliff as he made 20 errors in the field this past season compared to just 6 in each of the 2 previous seasons.
The second pick of the first round came as a supplemental pick for outfielder Aaron Rowand leaving to sign with San Francisco. They used this to go after a high schoool outfielder named Zach Collier. He spent the past year holding down center field alongside Hewitt for High A Clearwater, getting into 78 games total after serving a 50 game suspension for testing positive for amphetamines at the end of 2011. He stepped up to the plate 319 times knocking out a 269/333/399/733 line with 22 extra base hits, 6 HR, 39 runs scored, 32 RBI and 11 steals with excellent defense. He only struck out 60 times over the course of the season to pair with 27 walks.
Philly would pick early in the 2nd round as compensation from the Giants for signing Rowand. They had the 51st overall selection and took another prep outfielder in Anthony Gose. He spent the 2012 season split between AAA Las Vegas (102 games) where he played centerfield and Toronto (56 games) where he played all 3 outfield positions. While still in AAA, Gose made 482 trips to home plate where he managed to produce a 286/366/419/785 slash line with 36 extra base hits, 5 going over the fence, 87 runs scored, 43 RBI and 34 steals. He struck out a hair over twice as many times as he walked with 101 K and 50 BB. Once he received his promotion to the big leagues, Gose came up to bat 189 times and didn't fare quite as well. His line in Toronto was 223/303/319/622 with 11 extra base hits, 1 home run, 25 runs, 11 RBI and 15 more steals. His eye wasn't as good either as he struck out 59 times to only 17 walks. Add up both parts of his season though and it came out solid. Over a total of 671 plate appearances and 158 games, he produced a 268/349/391/740 line with 47 extra base knocks, 58 steaks, 112 runs scored, 37 stolen bases, and a 2.39 strike out to walk ratio.
The second of the Phillies 2nd round selections was another prep player, this time right handed pitch Jason Knapp with the 71st overall pick. Knapp would end up battling shoulder issues the majority of his career. After being traded to Cleveland and having 2 surgeries, he was released in August of 2012. The last pro season Knapp had was in 2010 where he split time between the Cleveland Arizona Fall league rookie affiliate and A ball Lake County of the Midwest league. He combined to make 9 starts with a 2.86 ERA, 1-2 record, 1.02 WHIP and 47 K to 12 BB in 28 1/3 innings. This was good for some amazing rate stats including 14.9 K/9, just 5.4 H/9, 3.8 BB/9 and a 3.92 strikeout to walk ratio. If his shoulder can come back to anywhere near his previous levels he could still have a future in baseball. Coming into the 2013 season he'll be just 22 years old.
The 5th pick of the draft for the Phils came in the 3rd round with pick 102. The front office shifted course and went after college righty Vance Worley. Worley has implanted himself at the back end of the rotation behind stalwarts Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels. 2012 saw Worley battle injuries at the end of May and September but did manage to make 23 starts spanning 133 innings. He posted a 6-9 record, 4.20 ERA, 3.85 FIP, and a 1.51 WHIP. His rate stats were solid for a player on his second go round in the bigs with a 7.2 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9, but he was very hittable this past season. Batters posted a .287 batting average against with a .340 BABIP and 10.4 H/9. Worley was traded this past December along with the 4th round pick of the 2008 draft for the Phillies, right hander Trevor May, to the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Ben Revere.
2/75 Kelly Dugan OF, 3/106 Kyrell Hudson OF, 4/137 Adam Buschini 2B, 5/167 Matthew Way LHP, 6/197 Steven Inch RHP
In 2009, the Philadelphia front office had to wait until the 75th pick overall to make their first selection of the draft. They forfeited their first round pick which was the 27th overall to the Seattle Mariners after signing outfielder Raul Ibanez. Once their name was called they went with high school outfielder Kelly Dugan. 2012 marked his first full professional season as he appeared in 117 games for class A Lakewood in the South Atlantic league. He split time on the diamond between right field (79 games) and 1st base (25 games) and came up to the plate a total of 498 times. Over that span he posted a very impressive 300/387/470/857 line with 12 home runs, 47 extra base knocks, 60 RBI and 83 runs scored. He added 5 steals to go with 48 walks and 122 K's. He was also wore a pitch 15 times over the course of the season.
Their next pick was in the 3rd round where the Phillies picked another prep outfielder with the 106th overall pick, Kyrell Hudson. He was only able to appear in 64 games before suffering a hand injury that would knock him out for the rest of the season. In those 64 games, he split the majority of his playing time in center field (36 games) and right field (12 games) while making 239 plate appearances. He managed a 224/277/297/574 line with 28 runs scored, 21 runs batted in, 23 stolen bases and 13 extra base hits. He also had a horrible batting eye with 10 walks to 73 strikeouts. On July 12th, Hudson underwent surgery to repair damaged tendons in his throwing hand.
The third pick of the year was 137th overall in the 4th round where the team went with college 2nd baseman Adam Buschini. He only spent 2 seasons in the Phillies organization, posting an OPS near .650 both seasons. Last year he spent the season playing for the Amarillo Sox of the American Association independent league. He was the anchor for the team, playing 96 games while making 439 plate appearances and splitting time between left field and second base in the field. Buschini's line for the season was 354/410/562/972 with 46 extra base hits, 14 home runs, 34 stolen bases, 70 RBI and 87 runs scored. He drew 37 walks to just 58 strike outs for a 1.57 strikeout to walk ratio.
They followed Buschini with another college player in the 5th round with the 167th overall pick; selecting college southpaw Matthew Way. Way spent 2 seasons with the Phillies before being released at the end of spring this past season. He missed the second half of 2010 with lingering back pain and all of 2011 with an elbow injury. He came back to play independent ball in 2012, beginning with the Laredo Lemurs of the American Association and finishing the year with the Long Island Ducks of the Atlantic League. For the whole season, Way made 22 starts with 1 relief appearance and he also spent one game in center field (after all, this is the independent leagues). On the bump he posted a 12-7 record spanning 142 innings, including 7 complete games and 3 shutouts. He had a 3.61 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 8.3 K/9, 4.3 BB/9, and 8.1 H/9. He was especially dominant in his stint with Long Island to finish the season where he made 2 starts and pitched 13 1/3 innings of 4-hit, scoreless baseball with 19 strikeouts and 4 walks.
The 5th pick of the Phillies 2009 draft went in the 6th round with the 197th overall pick. The front office went back to selecting prep players by going with high school right hander Steven Inch. After spending only 2 innings on the mound in his first 2 years in the organization due to injury, 2012 was considered a success. He made 22 relief appearances, pitching 43 1/3 innings with a 3.74 ERA, 3.48 FIP, 1.34 WHIP, and 2-1 record. He struck out 5.2 per 9, walked 2.1 per 9 and gave up 10 H/9, while also allowing opposing batters a .273 average.
1/27 Jesse Biddle LHP, 2/77 Perci Garner RHP, 3/108 Cameron Rupp C, 4/141 Bryan Morgado LHP, 5/171 Scott Frazier RHP
The 2010 draft started with the 27th pick for the Phils and they took high school southpaw Jesse Biddle at the end of the first round. He spent the entire season holding down the rotation for High A Clearwater, making 26 starts and even threw a complete game. He pitched a total of 142 2/3 innings, earning a 10-6 record with a 3.22 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and 3.24 FIP. He had excellent power stuff as evidenced by his 9.5 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9. He limited batters to a .236 average and 8.1 H/9 even though his BABIP was .308.
The next choice of the Philadelphia front office was a college right hander, Perci Garner, going 77th overall in the 2nd round. Garner received his first full season in the rotation alongside Biddle at High A Clearwater. He made 26 starts with a 7-9 record while pitching 134 innings and a deceptive 4.84 ERA. He had a 4.26 FIP and 1.48 WHIP, 6.1 K/9, and 4.2 BB/9. He limited opponents to a .256 batting average and .294 BABIP with 9.1 H/9.
In the 3rd round the team went with another college player, this time on the position side by going with catcher Cameron Rupp. He was the battery mate for both Biddle and Garner this past year spending the whole season at High A Clearwater playing in 104 games. He made 390 trips to the plate posting a 267/345/424/770 line with 33 extra base hits, 10 home runs, 49 RBI, and 32 runs scored. He made no attempt to steal a base but did draw 40 walks to 77 strikeouts.
The 4th pick of the year was another college pitcher, this time a lefty coming in the 4th round with the 141st pick overall. Bryan Morgado finally signed with a team after being drafted for the 3rd time, but battled injuries to his left arm since being drafted. He was released in August 2012 after pitching for 3 different Phillies affiliates; High A Clearwater (4 games), class A Lakewood (8 games) and the Rookie Gulf Coast affiliate (1 game). Overall he posted a 3.38 ERA over 12 relief appearances and 1 start. He pitched 24 innings with a 1.46 WHIP, 9 K/9, 9 H/9, and 4.1 BB/9.
The Phillies front office went back to prep arms for the 5th round of the draft, taking right hander Scott Frazier 171st overall. The team was unable to come to terms with Frazier who stayed true to his commitment to Pepperdine University.
1/39 Larry Greene OF, 2/66 Roman Quinn SS, 2/90 Harold Martinez 3B, 3/120 Adam Morgan LHP, 4/151 Cody Asche 3B
The Phillies had to wait until the supplemental first round to make their first pick in 2011. They lost their first round selection due to signing Cliff Lee away from Texas. They received the 39th overall selection as a supplemental pick because of Jayson Werth leaving for DC. They used this pick to take prep outfielder Larry Greene, who did not sign in time to make it onto the field in 2011. This past season was his first year as a pro and he appeared in 70 games in left field for short season Williamsport in the New York-Penn league. He made 303 trips to the plate, amassing a 272/373/381/754 slash line with 24 extra base hits, 2 round trippers, 26 RBI, 36 runs scored and 1 stolen base. His eye at the plate was excellent as he took 42 walks but had 78 strikeouts to go with it.
Jayson Werth's departure landed the Phillies the 6th pick of the 2nd round from Washington, 66th overall in the draft, as well as their supplemental first rounder. The front office stuck with high upside prep position players by selecting short stop Roman Quinn. Quinn also did not sign in time to play in 2011 so this past season was his first pro year. He played in 66 games alongside Greene for Williamsport, making 309 trips to the dish. His slash line for the season sat at 281/370/408/778 with 21 extra base hits, one bomb shot, 23 RBI, 56 runs scored and 30 stolen bases. He took 28 walks to go with 61 strikeouts but was pretty bad in the field. Over the course of the season Quinn committed 27 errors in 302 chances for a paltry .911 fielding percentage.
The second pick of the second round went 90th overall to the Phillies where they went for college third baseman Harold Martinez. The beginning of 2012 saw Martinez in class A Lakewood for 47 games, making 182 plate appearances. Over that time he amassed a 262/330/341/671 line with 12 extra base hits, zero home runs, 17 RBI and 14 runs scored along with a single steal. He drew 14 walks to 32 whiffs before his promotion in the middle of June. The team bumped him up to High A Clearwater where he spent 56 games to finish the season. He made 211 trips to the plate in Clearwater, sporting a 226/276/333/610 line with 14 extra base hits and 3 home runs. He scored 21 times and drove in 15 more to go with 2 stolen bags. He struck out 45 times while drawing 13 walks. He also split time in the field between 3rd base (63 games) and 1st base (38 games) throughout the year. Overall he came out of the season with a 242/301/337/638 slash line with a total of 393 PA, 26 extra base hits, 3 HR, 32 RBI, 35 runs, and 3 steals to go with 27 walks and 77 strike outs.
The next pick of the Phillies was another college player, left handed pitcher Adam Morgan going 120th overall in the 3rd round. Morgan emerged as a rotation stalwart for both Clearwater (21 games) and AA Reading (6 games). He was consistently good regardless of competition, pitching to a 3.29 ERA in High A and a 3.53 ERA in AA. He pitched 123 innings for Clearwater with a 4-10 record, 2.40 FIP, 1.07 WHIP, 10.2 K/9, 2 BB/9, 7.5 H/9 and a complete game. Opposing batters only managed a .224 average against him with a .307 BABIP. This held a lot of weight with the front office as they bumped him up to AA for the first time in his career. In the 6 starts he made for AA Reading, he pitched 35 2/3 innings with a 4-1 record, 1.26 WHIP, 3.23 FIP, 7.3 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 and 8.6 H/9. All in all, Morgan toed the rubber 26 times as a starter with 1 relief appearance, 158 2/3 innings pitched, an 8-11 record with 1 complete game, 3.35 ERA and 1.11 WHIP. His rate stats were excellent at 9.6 K/9, 2.2 BB/9 and 7.8 H/9.
4th round pick Cody Asche, a college third baseman, was taken 151st overall which is looking like a steal going as late as he did. He has shot up prospect rankings after a breakout campaign in 2012 where he split time between High A Clearwater and AA Reading. He started by mashing Florida State league pitching to the tune of a 349/378/447/825 line over 62 games and 270 plate appearances. He had 18 extra base hits, 2 home runs, 25 runs knocked in, 31 runs scored, and 10 steals. Asche struck out 37 times to go with 13 walks as well. Once he was able to escape the not-so-friendly confines of the Florida State league, his power exploded. In 68 games with AA Reading, Asche batted 289 times with 33 extra base hits, including 10 home runs. His line finished at 300/360/513/873 as he drove in 47, scored 42 runs, stole a base and drew 22 walks to 56 strikeouts. Add it all together for the whole season and you get 130 games played, all at 3rd base, 559 total plate appearances, 73 runs, 72 RBI, 11 steals, 12 home runs, 51 extra base hits, 35 walks and 93 strikeouts. His overall batting line stood at 324/369/481/849 for the 2012 season. FanGraphs pegged Asche's 2012 season with Clearwater as having a wRC+ of 134 and a wRC+ of 141 while with Reading.
1/40 Shane Watson RHP, 1/54 Mitch Gueller RHP, 2/77 Dylan Cozens, 2/95 Alec Rash RHP, 3/125 Zach Green 3B
The Phils gave up their first round selection again in 2012, opting instead to sign closer Jonathan Papelbon. Although their original first round selection was slated at the 31st overall pick, the front office had to wait nine more picks to go 40th overall as compensation for Ryan Madsen signing with Cincinnati. They used their first pick to sign high school right hander Shane Watson. As with all players with such limited time as professionals, their stats should be taken with a grain of salt due to such a small sample size. Watson made 5 appearances after signing for the Rookie Gulf Coast league affiliate of the Phillies with a 0-1 record. He threw 7 innings, giving up 5 hits and one run while striking out 8 and only allowing a single free pass. This came out to a 1.29 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 10.3 K/9, 1.3 BB/9, 6.4 H/9 and an opponents batting average of .200.
The second pick of the first round came 14 picks later, 54th overall, as compensation for the Yankees signing Raul Ibanez prior to 2012. This selection was used on another high school right handed pitcher, Mitch Gueller. Because he signed so early, Gueller was able to make 6 starts and 2 relief appearances covering 27 1/3 innings for the Rookie level Gulf Coast Phillies. He didn't have quite the success Watson did, going 1-5 with a 5.27 ERA, 3.13 FIP, 1.39 WHIP, 6.3 K/9, 4 BB/9, 8.6 H/9, and opponents hitting .248 against him.
The next pick was another compensation pick via the Reds for signing Ryan Madsen. It came in the 2nd round, 77th overall, and the front office continued taking high upside prep talent, this time in the form of outfielder Dylan Cozens. He played in 50 games while patrolling right field for Gueller, Watson, and the rest of the pitching staff for the Rookie Gulf Coast league affiliate. He posted a 255/341/441/782 line covering 183 plate appearances with 24 runs and RBI, 5 home runs, 18 extra base hits, 8 steals and 21 walks to pair with 44 strikeouts.
The second pick of the second round came at number 95 overall. Again, the Phillies went with a high school player, this time a right handed pitcher by the name of Alec Rash. He would not be able to come to terms with the team and decided to instead go play at the University of Missouri and re-enter the draft in 2015.
The 5th pick for the Phillies wound up coming to them in the 3rd round with the 125th pick. They didn't stop in their quest to find a projectable, raw high school kid; this time it was short stop Zach Green whose name was called. After signing, the team decided to move him over to third base where he played 31 games while still making 9 starts at short stop. He appeared in 47 games total for the Gulf Coast league affiliate, batting 183 times to the tune of a 284/333/426/759 line with 17 extra base hits, 3 home runs, 20 runs scored and 21 RBI. Green stole 2 bags and struck out 43 times to just 8 walks.
The last 5 drafts haven't been very good for the Fightin Phils. The only 2 players that have made it to the majors are now playing for different teams (Anthony Gose - TOR and Vance Worley - MIN). Two players have moved on to the independent leagues (Adam Buschini and Matthew Way) while three players are not playing affiliated baseball (Jason Knapp, Scott Frazier and Alec Rash) even though 2 are still eligible to be drafted again (Frazier and Rash). There were zero players drafted in the past 5 years to play for AAA Lehigh Valley this past year and only two peaked at AA Reading (Adam Morgan and Cody Asche). High A Clearwater was a popular destination with 9 players spending time there (Morgan, Asche, Anthony Hewitt, Zach Collier, Jesse Biddle, Perci Garner, Cameron Rupp, Bryan Morgado, and Harold Martinez), while 7 peaked there. Class A Lakewood played host to 4 players throughout the season (Morgado, Martinez, Kelly Dugan, and Kyrell Hudson) and short season Williamsport had 3 players (Steven Inch, Larry Greene and Roman Quinn) play with them. Their Rookie Gulf Coast league affiliate wound up having 5 players play there (Morgado, Shane Watson, Mitch Gueller, Dylan Cozens and Zach Green) with the last 4 being from the 2012 draft.