Each and every winter I compile prospect rankings and count down the Phillies organization’s top 25 minor league players. In the coming weeks, I’ll be posting reviews for each of the top developmental talents that appear to have the brightest futures in the Phils organization.
Taken into consideration when compiling the list is age, minor league performance relative to levels played to date, value to the organization as well as each player's future potential along with proximity to the big leagues.
These rankings will not contain players over the age of 25 or individuals that have already spent lengthy stretches in the big leagues.
For example, hurler JoJo Romero has graduated out of this list after competing in the big leagues in each of the last two seasons. Pitcher Ramon Rosso, who appeared in 14 total big league games over the past two seasons, is also not being considered.
Players that garnered consideration for this year's list but did not place among the top 25 names includes individuals with high ceilings as well as some names you may have already begun hearing about.
Left-handed hurler Zach Warren has hovered on the edge of a breakout in recent seasons, but spells of inconsistency have prevented the 25-year-old from convincing many that he has a future at the top level of the sport.
The Phils' 25th round draft choice from 2017 experienced ups and downs last year, earning his way to Triple-A, but ultimately failed to stick around with the IronPigs and was demoted back to Double-A Reading. In 37 games for Reading, Warren looked strong, posting a 1-2 record with three saves and a 2.64 ERA, a .177 batting average against and a 14.2 K/9 mark. In a pair of outings with Lehigh Valley, Warren surrendered nine earned runs in 1 1/3 innings.
Righty pitcher Micah Ottenbreit is on his way to becoming a prospect name worth knowing. The 18-year-old was a 4th round draft selection last year out of high school in Michigan. In five appearances in the Florida Complex League, Ottenbreit notched a 1-0 record with a 4.50 ERA and a .273 batting average against. Touted for his strong fastball and his great curveball, the youngster is said to have a considerably high ceiling with a starter profile.
Gunner Mayer is another pitcher that is deserving of consideration on a list such as this. The 21-year-old right-hander was a 5th round draft pick in 2019. An injury sidelined Mayer for a portion of last season and while he bounced back physically, his statistics didn't seem to get there. In 11 appearances (seven starts) with Class A Clearwater, he tallied a 0-7 record with a 10.03 ERA and a .320 batting average against. Looking healthy of late in spring workouts, Mayer could be a candidate to pitch for Class A Advanced Jersey Shore this coming season.
Check back here often as the minor league season approached in order to keep tabs on this year's top Phillies prospects.