Philly Sports Live

Phillies Look to Future with September Call Ups

Philadelphia Phillies fans will have the opportunity to get a close-up look at five prospects and two veterans the club has called up as part of its expanded September roster.

Leading the way is 22 year-old Maikel Franco, who made his MLB debut on Tuesday, starting at third base against the Atlanta Braves. Ranked as one of the Top 100 prospects in baseball prior to this season, Franco got off to a slow start at Triple-A Lehigh Valley, batting well below.200 in both April and June.

But the youngster from the Dominican Republic has since caught fire since the start of July, batting .321 with 11 homers and 47 RBI, and strengthening his case for a spot on the Phillies’ opening day roster in 2015. Sites like bettingsports who have MLB information available daily have already being tipping the youngster for big things.

Joining Franco as a September call up is pitcher Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, who will make his MLB debut out of the Phillies bullpen. It has been a tough season for the 27 year-old Cuban who had been projected as a future starter in the Phillies rotation, but has since been repositioned as a reliever since being shut down early in the season following reports he was suffering from a dead arm.

Gonzalez, who was inked as a free agent to a three-year, $15 million deal last year, responded well to his move to the pen, recording a 3.14 ERA and 24 K’s in 14.1 innings of work with Double-A Reading before being recalled to Lehigh Valley in August, where he didn’t give up a run in his last 12.2 innings over nine games, while striking out 15 and surrendering just seven BB.

Tony Gwynn Jr. had started the season in Philadelphia, but was cut in July following a sub-par campaign. After taking care of business following the death of his hall-of-fame father, Gwynn signed a minor league deal with the Phillies and has toiled faithfully in Lehigh Valley, earning a call up after batting .290 in games with the Iron Pigs.

Pitcher Luis Garcia accumulated 22 saves while posting a 0.96 ERA with Lehigh Valley. The 27 year-old represented the Iron Pigs in the 2014 International All-Star Game. Garcia struggled in earlier call ups this season, recording a 12.71 in 5.2 innings over four games.

Also getting called up are infielder Cesar Hernandez, who batted .256 in 40 games with the Iron Pigs this year, and Cameron Rupp, who set an Iron Pigs record back in April for most consecutive games with a homerun, when he hit four in four games to start the season.

Pitcher Mike Adams, who has been out since June with rotator cuff inflammation, will also join the Phillies after being activated from the 60-day DL.