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Top pitching prospect Sanchez promoted to Clearwater

Sixto Sanchez, image- Jay Floyd
It was announced on Friday that the Phillies have promoted top pitching prospect Sixto Sanchez to Class A Advanced Clearwater.  Though, savvy Twitter followers of this writer were tipped off to the news on Thursday night.

The 19-year-old right-hander had garnered much attention this year with excellent command and remarkable velocity, clocking 100 MPH and higher on a regular basis for the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws. In 13 starts there, the Dominican native sports a 5-3 record with a 2.41 ERA.  He notched 64 strike outs and walked only nine batters in 67 1/3 innings.  He held opponents to a .191 average.  Additionally noteworthy is that Sanchez allowed just a lone home run this season.

Sanchez was part of a strong BlueClaws pitching rotation that helped the team come within percentage points of winning a first-half division title. 

In a recent interview, Sanchez told me that his BlueClaws teammates helped him improve and achieve success this year.  Joining a new club won't set him back at all, as he'll join JoJo Romero and Ranger Suarez as key Lakewood contributors that made the jump up a level during this season.

Competition in the Florida State League will prove to be a nice challenge for Sanchez, a six-foot tall 180-pounder.  He had begun to look unmatched for Lakewood, where his ERA over his last eight starts since returning from a stint on the disabled list with a neck strain was 1.47.  

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