Luke Williams, the baseball pride of Park Ridge, Illinois, was atop a Scottsdale Scorpions lineup yesterady afternoon that featured a record setting five Phillies prospects. Starting along with Luke (in left) were Austin Listi in right, Darick Hall at first, and Arquimedes Gamboa at third, and Seth McGarry on the mound.
Luke’s parents were in town for the day, his mom sporting the #9 that Luke wore for the Threshers last year. Here they are pre-game, chatting it up with Aaron Fultz, a former Phils’ lefty and current pitching coach for the Scopions who does the same honors for the club in Clearwater. When I wished Luke well and told him that I hope we see him in Clearwater, he looked surprised and said: “I hope not!”. I could have been clearer. Luke meant he hoped to be advancing to the next level with the Fightins in Reading, and I meant Clearwater for Spring Training because he would have done so well in the Fall League! Seriously, Luke, is it that hard to read my mind?
As it turned out, Luke got one of only three hits that the Scorpions had for the day. It was his second hit of Fall Ball which, paired with two walks, gives him a batting average of .118 and an on base percentage of .286. The rest of the Phils aren’t faring much better thus far, with Listi at .163/.250, Hall at .175/.205, and Gamboa at .216/.375. Actually Gamboa’s .375 has opened enough eyes to put him in the running as an East Candidate ballot vote for this weekend’s Fall Stars Game, although there were no eureka moments for him or any of his teammates in yesterday’s 3-0 loss to the Desert Dogs.
Despite starting on the mound yesterday, Seth McGarry went only two innings because he is slotted as a relief pitcher. The kid has a decent move to first base, and his 0.96 ERA is lovely, but control isn’t his strong suit.
McGarry, acquired by the Phils from the Pirates last year, has hit two batters (one yesterday) to go along with 7 walks, helping to inflate his WHIP to 1.61. On a more positive note, Seth’s Fightin Phils’ pitching mate Luke Leftwich has a splendid WHIP this Fall of 0.90 to complement his couldn’t-be-better ERA of …