This weeks minor leaguer of the week is Cody Overbeck. Overbeck is the starting 3B for the High A Clearwater Threshers. Overbeck, 24 next month, was drafted by the Phillies in the ninth round of the 2008 draft. Overbeck struggled last season in Clearwater hitting .230. He did manage to 36 extra base hits (23 doubles, 1 triple, and 12 HRs) in 361 ABs. But enough with the history lesson, let’s look at the week that just ended.
- .348/.400/.957 with 4 HRs and 7 RBIs.
That’s an impressive 1.357 OPS. Overbeck now has 7 Homeruns and 16 total extra base hits on the early season. He is almost a lock to have career highs in the power numbers. The only areas of concern are his strikeouts and his defense. He strikes out almost 20% of the time. He already has 2 errors charged to him in just 23 games.
Overbeck appears to have a lot of upside at a position of need. What also makes him work is the fact he is right handed. Polanco is signed thru 2012, so that gives Overbeck until then to find his way. It is very plausible that we are watching the beginning of the career of our third baseman of the future.
A little premature due to the off day on Thursday, but this weeks Phillie of the Week is Jayson Werth. Werth hit at a 5 for 17 (.294) including two homeruns, six RBIs, and a stolen base. The most impressive games that Werth stood out in was the middle game of the Diamondbacks series and the finale to the Giants series.
Werth put the Phils on his back against the Diamondbacks last Saturday night. He went 2 for 4 with 2 solo homeruns. If not for Werth’s power, the Phillies’ struggling offense could have been swept by the Diamondbacks.
Werth again pulled the Phillies out of the fire Wednesday afternoon in San Francisco. Down three with two outs and down to their last strike, Werth laced a double down the right field line off of Giants closer Brian Wilson. The Phils went on to win two innings later as the Giants fell apart.
The Phillies went 4-5 on their nine game road trip. Not bad. It could have been worse. It should have been better. If not for Werth, the Phils could have been in trouble.
This week’s player is Phillipe Aumont. As you all know, the Canadian righty was acquired in a deal last December that sent Cliff Lee to the Mariners. The deal was initially thought of as a complete loss when most Phillies fans didn’t want lose the league’s potentially best rotation that featured Halladay, Lee, and Hamels. Local media gave fan perception of returning players as not worth the deal. Phillipe Aumont silenced some of his critics this past week.
Aumont’s last two starts:
- April 19th vs. Harrisburg (Was): 5 IP 3 Hits 0 Walks 5 Strike Outs 1 ER (L)
- April 25th vs. Richmond (SF): 6 IP 0 Hits 2 Walks 4 Strike Outs 0 ER
That;s good for a 1-1 record with a 0.82 ERA. Overall he lowered his ERA to a respectable 3.32 Season ERA.
A 2007 Draftee, The Mariners drafted Aumont with the 11th pick in the draft. He made his debut the following season in Low A Wisconsin. In 2008, He alternated between starter and reliever.
- Starter: 8 GS 2-3 3.50 ERA (14 ER 36.0 IP)
- Reliever: 7 G 2-1 2 Saves 1.37 ERA (3 ER 19.2 IP)
His debut season was cut short due to shoulder and elbow strains.He was selected to the Futures Game in 2008, which if you don’t know, is the All Star Game for all levels of minor league ballplayers. Unfortunately, Aumont did not get on the field due to his injuries. The Mariners converterd Aumont to strictly a reliever for the 2009, where he did succeed.
- High A High Desert: 29 G 1-2 12 Saves 3.24 ERA (12 ER 33.1 IP)
- AA West Tennesee: 15 G 1-4 4 Saves 5.09 ERA (10 ER 17.2 IP)
Baseball America, one of the nation’s best baseball resources, ranked Aumont as the 93rd ranked prospect in all of baseball. Now, I know that a lot of scourned fans will state that we gave up 3 prospects ranked higher than Aumont, but they were given up for, realistically, the best pitcher in baseball.
Aumont is just 21 years old, birthday was in January, and is adjusting well to the Eastern League. Hopefully, he can keep the pace he has set in recent starts.
This week was tough so I am giving it to the entire starting rotation. Going into Friday’s series opener the Phillies starters had given up a total of 9 earned runs over 45 innings. That is good for a 1.80 ERA. The only starter that “struggled” was Moyer. Moyer surrendered 5 earned runs over a total of 12 innings pitched. Halladay was the only other starter to have two starts so far this week. He was lit up for 2 earned runs over 17 innings pitched. Kendrick, seemingly identifying his impending doom if he had another rough outing, pitched a gem in Houston going 8 strong and giving up no runs. Hopefully Hamels will have another solid outing in Arizona tonight and Blanton the same in his rehab assignment.
This weeks minor leaguer is Nicholas Hernandez. Hernandez is a 21 year old left handed starting pitcher. He started the season in Low A Lakewood, but could finish as high as AA Reading. Most likely will just be natural advancement to High A Clearwater. The name may sound familiar to some older fans. Hernandez is the son of former Brewer Catcher, Nicolas Hernandez. The Phillies version was drafted in the 12th round of last years draft. In fifteen starts for Short Season A Williamsport, Hernandez went 8-1 with a 2.70 ERA over 80.0 innings.
He picked up right where he left off. In the current week of eligibility, Hernandez went 1-0 with a 0.60 ERA over 15 innings. What I liked the best about his two outings was his K:BB ratio (16:10. If he can keep up this rate, he could be in Clearwater by his birthday. Congrats Nick!
This weeks Phillies of the Week is Chase Utley. Since April 10th, Utley has gone 7 for 22 (.318) with 5 homeruns and 12 RBIs. He struck just 4 times, but walked 6 times. He is right at the top of the national league with his 6 homeruns and 14 runs scored early in the 2010 season. A perrenial all-star, if Utley can stay healthy, it may be the year where Utley takes home the National Leauge Most Valuable Player award. Good work Chase, keep it up.
This weeks Phillie of the week is Roy Halladay. Halladay cost the Phillies three of the their top four prospects in Kyle Drabek, Michael Taylor, and Travis D’arnaud. But not only did we get Halladay, but he agreed to sign to a short term extension, keeping him with the Phillies atleast until 2013.
Halladay is arguably the best pitcher in baseball. The Phillies are hoping that Halladay performs so well that he makes Phillies fans think “Cliff Who?” In his first spring outing Halladay through a modest 24 pitches over 3 innings. Only 3 of those 24 pitches were out of the strike zone.
We all knew that Halladay was going to be the Opening Day starter in DC on April 5th. Being only a couple of days away, my expectations are high. Almost as high as the excitement is in this town. Baseball is back and the boys of summer are too. The quest begins Monday afternoon. The quest for the four peat in the division. The quest for the three peat for the pennant. The quest to regain what was lost last fall, the World Series trophy and Roy Halladay will be one of the main reasons why we get there.