Even before the Phillies started acquiring minor leaguers, Joe Jordan and the Phillies front office have been hinting that they are going to be taking it slow with their prospects. This morning, Jake Kaplan (New Matt Gelb) had an article up with some more quotes and speculations on the subject. Since each of these moves effects a group of players and not just an individual, lets take them one at a time.
If we’ve got to wait four, six, eight weeks to get him up here (to Reading), it’s not the end of the world – Joe Jordan
The Phillies are open to the idea of Crawford opening in Reading, but it looks like they are fine holding him back some to start the year. It is a little bit disappointing to not have Crawford as a lock for Reading, but it is important to remember that this is his 2nd full year in pro-ball. If they keep Crawford in Clearwater, the two players most affected are Malquin Canelo and Emmanuel Marrero. Both are glove first shortstops who probably are best served being in Lakewood, but with both deserving playing time, it was looking like one might get the bump to Clearwater.
In what is a more surprising move than Crawford, Kaplan reports that Amaro implied that Quinn could start back in Clearwater. The move would give Aaron Altherr the Reading center field job (though Altherr could also go to AAA). I think Quinn is ready to face Reading and I am not sure why they will keep him back. Joe Jordan did note that Quinn and Crawford are not on the same path. Outside of Altherr, the other affected player here is Carlos Tocci who should be in Clearwater this year. Tocci needs to play everyday and playing him in a corner seems to not make much sense. Ultimately, I think Quinn opens in AAm and if Altherr is there he moves to right field.
Right now the rotation locks appear to be:
Clearwater: Victor Arano/Yoel Mecias
Reading: Aaron Nola/Ben Lively/Tom Windle/Zach Eflin
Lehigh Valley: Joely Rodriguez/Adam Morgan/Adam Loewen/Sean O’Sullivan
Right now the hints are that Severino Gonzalez goes to AAA and Jesse Biddle goes to AA. Aaron Nola regardless of starting location, should move very quickly. I personally would send Biddle to AAA, but the Phillies might want to rebuild his confidence some, with some good starts. This also makes a move to the bullpen for Hoby Milner a forgone conclusion. The other consequence is that Miguel Nunez likely gets a second shot at Clearwater. Mark Leiter could stay in the Clearwater or make a move to the bullpen. Other possibilities in Clearwater include 2014 draftees Matt Imhof and Brandon Leibrandt, as well as injured RHP Drew Anderson.
There is absolutely no reason he should break camp in the big leagues and the Phillies have made this fairly clear. The extra year of control and 1-2 months of roster flexibility is much more valuable. Plus he has stuff to work on.
Other Banquet Notes:
I will present these as a series of tweets and then you should just go follow Mitch anyway.