Phillies Prospect Roundup: Valle heating up

The MLB Draft is over, but the fun is just beginning.  The more perceptive among the TGP faithful may have noticed the absence of a grandiose post-draft wrap up story; the truth is, there's really no way to grade this draft until we know exactly who the Phillies have managed to sign.

The whole post-draft signing process is a complicated one to explain, but it essentially boils down to players with remaining college eligibility (that includes high schoolers) using that as leverage to receive as big a bonus as possible.  The Phillies have gone above slot on a number of guys in recent years, including Domonic Brown, Trevor May, Jarred Cosart, Colby Shreve, Brody Colvin, and plenty more.  There are some potential candidates for above slot bonuses among the draftees this year, including...

5. Scott Frazier, RHP, Upland HS (Calif.)
20. Kevin Walter, RHP, Legacy HS (Colo.)
24. Chad Thompson, RHP, Fr., Orange Coast College
38. Keenyn Walker, Fr., Central Arizona College
40. Jeffrey Harvill, Evangel Christian Academy (La.)
42. Timothy Chadd, Bishop Carroll HS (Kan.)

Phuture Phillies put up his extensive draft review last night, and he's also got a comprehensive list of 2010 draft picks and their signing status, which he'll continue to update it through the August deadline.  And, of course, we'll update you at TGP in the event of a big-time signing.  In the meantime, the guys who filter in will begin play in Williamsport (who kick off their season on Friday) and the Gulf Coast League (who begin their campaign next Monday).

And so, for the last roundup this year that's exclusively full season teams, we'll check in with Sebastian Valle, Brody Colvin, Phillippe Aumont, Jiwan James and more after the jump.

Domonic Brown, OF-L, Reading: The power valve's been in the "off" position recently, with Brown only managing a pair of doubles in his last 10 contests, and the strikeout rate is still at an acceptable-but-not-ideal 22.2%. But that's nitpicking an otherwise excellent .308/.382/.556 campaign thus far in 2010, as Brown has pretty forcefully answered any lingering questions from his brief intro to Double-A last year.  The Eastern League All-Star game is July 14, and I suspect the organization will go ahead and promote their prized prospect to Lehigh Valley around that time.

Jonathan Singleton, 1B-L, Lakewood: Now at .407/.500/.704 through 132 plate appearances. The .459 BABIP is obviously going to come down, but he's still just murdering the ball (.297 ISO, 40.9% XBH, including a grand slam on Saturday night), and controlling the strike zone very well (15.2% BB, 20.4% K).  Easily a top five prospect in the organization at this point, and might even be #2 behind Dom.

Sebastian Valle, C-R, Lakewood: Just when all hope was lost... well, not really, but Valle did struggle immensely over the first few months of the season. He's been on a tear recently, though, with 5 homers since the calendar flipped to June, and an impressive .289/.333/.763 mark thus far this month.  He's still struggling to control the strike zone (6.4% BB, 24.1% K), but at least he seems to be turning things around in the power department, which is a step in the right direction.

Brody Colvin, RHP, Lakewood: I wondered a few weeks back if Colvin had turned a corner, and he's done nothing in the interim to refute that theory. Last Tuesday's start -- 7.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 8 K -- was just the latest in a line of effective outings for the prized 2009 draft pick.  You hate to cherry pick statistics, but since four fairly disastrous outings in April, he's been stellar: 49.0 IP, 51 H, 15 ER, 1 HR, 15 BB, 44 K (good for a 2.59 FIP).  At 61.1 innings on the year, he's probably halfway to his innings cap, and the progress has been substantial.

John Mayberry, OF-R, Lehigh Valley: Look, I'm very much a fan of the idea of DFAing Greg Dobbs, but we also need to face facts that there isn't really an internal solution to the problem. Cody Ransom isn't exactly lighting it up in Lehigh Valley (.274/.338/.478), and Mayberry's been banged up for the past couple of weeks after smashing his knee into the wall while trying to make a play in the outfield.  Mayberry did post a 3-for-3 game on Sunday in just his second game back, but with Ross Gload unable to play third base (or do much of anything), I just can't see Amaro tweaking the roster in this direction. A shame, too, because Mayberry could certainly help a bit against southpaws.

Phillippe Aumont, RHP, Clearwater: Given the organization change, role change, and mechanical changes, I really thought Aumont should have started the season in Clearwater.  He's there now, though certainly not in the manner the Phillies might have hoped, as they demoted the big righthander from Reading to work on some things.  His first Threshers outing was more of the same -- 0.2 IP, 3 H, 5 R, 1 HR, 4 BB -- but before screaming about Cliff Lee, we should take a step back and assess.  Given all the extraneous circumstances, Aumont should get some benefit of the doubt, but even putting all that aside, I'm thinking that this rough stretch simply tells us what we already knew: that Aumont profiles best out of the bullpen.

Colby Shreve, RHP, Lakewood: Strikeouts are the biggest factor in predicting the career prospects of a young hurler, so while it was great to see Shreve back healthy and pitching for the first time since Tommy John surgery in the spring of 2008, it was a bit disappointing to see him notch just 5 strikeouts through his first 12.2 innings.  He's racked up 32 whiffs in 34 innings since, though, so at the very least, he's showing raw stuff that's inducing some swings and misses.  Hopefully we can get a report on his stuff at some point and see what we've got here.

Scott Mathieson, RHP, Lehigh Valley: Season numbers: 29.0 IP, 17 H, 4 R, 2 HR, 10 BB, 33 K, 2.76 FIP.  Scouting reports: still touching upper-90s with his fastball.  Status: still biding his time.

Quintin Berry, OF-L, Reading: Berry didn't make the cut for the preseason Top 30 despite a solid 2009 campaign in Reading because of his advanced age (he's 25) and his swing-and-miss tendencies (career 20.8% K). Surprisingly, he's started 2010 back in Reading, and the speedy outfielder has yet to really get on track, posting just a .220/.341/.300 line through 186 plate appearances thus far.  It's a definite step backwards, and if Berry eventually wants to contribute as a spare outfielder in the majors, he'll have to right the ship.

Jiwan James, OF-S, Lakewood: The full-on breakout many expected of James this year simply hasn't materialized, but as with any toolshed outfielder, that doesn't mean it's time to give up.  The rangy center fielder just had an 8-for-23 week  with 2 doubles, 1 triple, and 2 stolen bases to raise his season averages to .248/.299/.349.  Perhaps the biggest disappointment has been James' plate discipline (5.6% K, 24.0% BB), especially after some encouraging returns on that front last year (8.2% BB, 18.1% K).  Still, for a guy with 134 pro plate appearances coming into this season, it's not an altogether disappointing campaign, and I'd still put him ahead of Anthony Hewitt, Zach Collier, and Kyrell Hudson in the "toolshed power rankings."

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