The Future is Unwritten: Juan Sosa Scouting Report

The Phillies lack electricity in the limbs of their system. Out of the four pitchers in last year’s Baseball America Top 10 list, only one (Ethan Martin) had a consistently plus fastball (Morgan, Biddle and Pettibone were the others). While the Phillies young arms are not exhilarating, hard throwing pitchers are becoming more prevalent in the league as a whole. This season, about 120 pitchers who threw 30+ big league innings this year had an average fastball velocity over 92mph (according to FanGraphs’ page and pitch type classification which can be pretty shitty. It says Jake Diekman’s fastball averaged 91mph this year. That’s not right.) compared to roughly 90 pitchers with 60+ grade fastball velo in 2008. That’s a very unscientific 33% increase in half of a decade and only serves to make the Phillies system look more barren than it is at first glance. There are as many plus-plus or better fastballs in the entire Phillies system (Ethan Martin, Kenny Giles and prospect du jour, Juan Sosa) as you might have seen in the Buffalo Bison (Toronto’s AAA) bullpen on a given night this season (Jeremy Jeffress, Brad Lincoln, John Stilson). That’s not to say some baby dragons in the GCL or Williamsport won’t breath fire one day as they fill out and mature, it’s just the present reality. Continue reading…

2013 Phillies Report Card: Justin De Fratus

The unknown is a seductive idea. When we were young, we looked off into the distance, into the future, with wonder, enraptured by the possibilities that the devil you don’t know can entail. Your life is boring, your routines tiresome, your friends wholly known. This is the appeal of a series of works of fiction that have become popular in the recent past, where a meek, unhappy man is lifted from his banal existence and into an exciting new future–Fight ClubAmerican BeautyBreaking Bad. Hope is escapism, and as long as that hope is deferred, we can continue to wonder if life might be better if we made a leap of faith and threw off the shackles of the known.

And so we once dreamed on Justin De Fratus.

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