A story on MLB.com this afternoon features former first overall picks like Ken Griffey Jr., David Price and Stephen Strasburg offering up advice about being chosen first and surviving the minor leagues to this year’s number one. Who will be Bryce Harper, of course, even if the story doesn’t name him.
Interesting I suppose, but among them those guys have just a tad more minor league experience than I have, so their insight along those lines is probably of limited utility. I’d be much more interested in hearing the advice of guys who didn’t have such an easy time of it. Seems to me that guys like Brian Bullington, Matt Anderson and Paul Wilson just might have something more useful to offer than “enjoy it while it lasts” and things of that nature.
Chris Young joined the Phillies as their assistant pitching coach last offseason. This offseason he’s getting a promotion: the Phillies just named as their main (um, top? lead? alpha?) pitching coach for the 2019 season. He replaces Rick Kranitz.
Ken Rosenthal, who reported the promotion, says that the Phillies didn’t necessarily want to shake up their pitching coach situation, but that since several clubs wanted to hire Young away, it was either promote him to the top job or lose him. That’s bad news for Kranitz, but he remains under contract for 2019 and will, in the meantime, be allowed to interview elsewhere.
The Phillies pitching staff ranked 11th in runs allowed in the National League in 2018. They were tenth the year before that, but some early season uncertainty and mismanagement by Gabe Kapler and a late season collapse served to hide what was, for most of the season, a bit of a better staff than the year before. The Phillies obviously credit Young for that and want to keep him in the fold.