Around the Minors – a quick look at some top performers in the Phillies farm system this week
Lehigh Valley – Those waiting for the big triple-A breakout from outfielder Michael Taylor can rest easy after last week’s performance. The 6’6”, 250-pound Stanford product hit for the cycle Wednesday, going 5-for-5 with an extra double and 4 RBI. He hit a game-tying homer in the bottom of the ninth to finish off the cycle in style. Two nights later Taylor was at it again as he went 3-for-5 with a home run, 3 RBI and a stolen base. He is now hitting .282 with the Iron Pigs and slugging .491 in 30 games. It’s safe to say that after struggling immediately after the promotion, Taylor is back on track.
Reading – Mike Stutes capped a month of strong starts with his best of the season last night, pitching 7 shutout innings against the B-Mets. Stutes allowed 2 hits and a walk while striking out 9 batters to pick up the win. He has not allowed more than 3 ER in his past 10 starts and boasts a 2.25 ERA over that stretch with 48 strikeouts in 60 innings.
Top outfield prospect Domonic Brown doubled and scored the only run of the game last night to back Stutes, and is now hitting .309 and slugging .600 in 15 games at Reading. Brown is rolling on the basepaths as well, stealing 5 bases so far without being caught at double-A.
Clearwater – There may be signs of life for Freddy Galvis at the plate, as the slick-fielding shortstop is hitting .291 in 14 August games. He is batting just .248 for the season with the Threshers, but if he can maintain an average around .270-.280 he has the glove to make himself a major league-caliber shortstop.
Lakewood – Two strong prospects have been pitching very well in Lakewood, including good starts last week. Justin De Fratus gave up one run over 7 innings and struck out 5 batters Friday night, lowering his ERA to 3.48. If not for one awful start on July 16, De Fratus would have a 2.76 ERA this year. Another member of the Blue Claws rotation, Trevor May pitched 5 innings of one-run ball and struck out 6 on Saturday. He now has a 3.14 ERA with 72 K in 57.1 innings and a very impressive .214 batting average against.
Williamsport – Catcher Sebastian Valle has four hits and 4 RBI over his last three games, including a pair of doubles. He spent time at Lakewood earlier this season but struggled, and has been excellent since moving back down to play with the Crosscutters, hitting .316 in 41 games.