Skip to main content

Prospect Nation 2013: #20 RHP Tyler Knigge

Right-hander Tyler Knigge (pronounced kuh-NIG-ee) proved himself to be a fast rising pitching prospect last year, as he dominated with the Class A Advanced Clearwater Threshers and later earned a promotion to Double-A Reading.

Drafted in the 12th round of the 2010 draft out of Lewis-Clark State College, Knigge made his pro debut that year, pitching with the Gulf Coast League Phillies and the short-season Class A Williamsport Crosscutters, sporting a 0-4 record along with a 5.28 ERA in 11 outings (four starts). He would pitch in the Florida Instructional League that year as well. The following season, Knigge was a strong performer with Class A Lakewood, pitching exclusively out of the bullpen, where he looked tougher on opposing batters, tallying a 4-3 record, four saves and a 3.32 ERA.

In an effort to increase his own stamina, Knigge lost approximately 15 pounds over the 2011-2012 off-season. With improved conditioning, Knigge was amazing with Clearwater last year, posting a 0.60 ERA along with a 4-1 record and nine saves in 34 relief outings, and was recognized as a Florida State League All-Star.

In early July, the 6-foot-3-inch 225-pounder was promoted to Reading and would post strong numbers there as well, with no decisions, two saves and a 2.92 ERA in 21 appearances. If not for an oddity of an outing on July 20 in Trenton, in which he was charged with three earned runs without recording an out, Knigge’s ERA at the Double-A level would have been 1.82.

Knigge saw his batting average against go from .243 in 2011 to a much improved .204 in 2012, as he jumped two levels. Additionally, Knigge’s K/9 of 9.09 during the 2012 regular season was a nice improvement over the previous season’s 7.48 mark as well.

Knigge spent time this autumn in the Arizona Fall League, where he struggled a bit, posting a 7.50 ERA through 10 outings for Peoria.  The troublesome numbers weren't disappointed to a mentally sturdy Knigge, who took many lessons out of his time there against some top notch competition.

The 23-year-old possesses a repertoire that includes a plus fastball with some movement that generally ranges 94-96 MPH, but can clock higher, a solid change up as well as a quickly developing slider that his coaches have confidence in.  Knigge dropped his knuckle curve offering in favor of the slider heading into last year. 

The area where Knigge needs the most improvement, as he admits himself, is throwing his slider with more confidence, in fastball counts, and keeping the opposition off balance. The Idaho native, who was coached by his father, Kent, during his formative years, credits his dad, who was also a pitcher at Lewis-Clark, with helping him learn the game.  Kent, an American Legion coach, continues to help Tyler with his mechanics to this day, providing physical and mental advice, whenever he sees fit.

Look for Tyler to begin the season in the back end of Reading's bullpen, likely as the club's closer.  With his tools and exceptional focus on improving all aspects of his game, it may not be long, before Knigge is mentioned among the crop of home grown relievers like Antonio Bastardo, Mike Stutes and Justin De Fratus, that the big league Phillies are expected to depend on going forward.

Comments

Anonymous said…
no one else really ranking this guy. why are people sleeping on him? i think he should see some spring training action this year, so we can get good a look at him.

Popular posts from this blog

This Guy Speaks For All of You

This individual, interviewed by FOX 29 on Friday as the Phillies arrived back at Citizens Bank Park, said it best. When asked how he felt regarding the Phillies, he told Steve Keeley that he was, "Stoked, baby!" The unidentified phanatic then proclaimed, "We are talking about the Fightins here, the Fightins! Said!" Check out the media player below, as the transcribed version certainly does not do this phireball of phandom justice. The Phillies forced game 6 of the National League Championship Series with a 4-2 victory over the Giants in San Francisco on Thursday night. Game 6 will feature Roy Oswalt vs. Jonathan Sanchez in a return pitching match up from game 2. First pitch is scheduled for 7:57 pm EST at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. Be sure to tune in on 97.3 ESPN's Weekend Sports Guide with Tyrone Johnson this afternoon around 1:15pm to hear me chatting about the Phillies! 97.3 is based in Atlantic City. You can listen live online HERE . _________

Who is Your Favorite Willie 'Mays' Hayes?

PhoulBallz.com is wondering which individual who has portrayed Willie "Mays" Hayes is the favorite of the public. Hayes, of course, is the character made famous in the Major League motion picture series. In Major League , Willie "Mays" Hayes was portrayed by budding Hollywood actor Wesley Snipes, who would go on to action movie superstardom. Snipes has starred in major motion pictures like the Blade trilogy, Passenger 57 , Undisputed and many more. Snipes remains an impact Hollywood actor, despite legal troubles related to income tax evasion. Snipes was replaced for the sequel, Major League II when his busy career, and possibly the film's budget, would not allow him to return, by Omar Epps. Another budding actor, Epps had previously worked with director David S. Ward, on the film The Program , and landed the role of Hayes, who had become a Hollywood action star over the off-season that occured between the two films. Epps' career portraying athletes rol

Wassup with dat? Vito Friscia edition

Friscia, image- Jay Floyd What's up with that Vito Friscia guy?  Well, he's a 24-year-old righty batting catcher that was drafted by the Phillies out of Hofstra University in 2019 with the team's final selection, 1200th overall, in the 40th round. But what's his deal?  Friscia opened the season with Class A Advanced Jersey Shore, where, in 16 games, he notched a .264 batting average with a pair of home runs, five doubles and seven RBI.  Last week, when Triple-A Lehigh Valley needed a reserve backstop, Friscia was promoted to fill their void.  When Rafael Marchan returned from a short stint in the big leagues, Friscia was assigned to the Double-A Reading roster.   Is he just a backup catcher?  For now, it seems that's his role.  But check out this quote from BlueClaws skipper Chris Adamson from earlier this month when I asked him about which player stood out to him as a guy that deserved recognition, but may not be getting it. "Vito Friscia is a guy that, earl