CINCINNATI — Just like in the past, the Phillies will use this year's Arizona Fall League play to make decisions on a few fringe minor-leaguers. The most notable name is Tyson Gillies, one of the three prospects acquired in the second Cliff Lee trade.
Gillies is one of seven Phillies farmhands who will play for the Scottsdale Scorpions this fall. All seven players are eligible for selection in this winter's Rule 5 draft if they are not protected on the 40-man roster. All seven are not currently on the 40-man roster.
So this fall is just another chance for evaluation. Gillies is joined by righthanders Tyler Cloyd, B.J. Rosenberg, Colby Shreve; lefthander Jacob Diekman; and infielders Cody Overbeck and Darin Ruf.
Gillies, 22, has played in just three games this season while hampered by nagging hamstring and foot injuries. The Phillies obviously believe he will be healthy enough this fall to use one of their limited AFL roster spots on him. He'll be a part of a Scottsdale outfield that includes two of baseball's top prospects: Washington's Bryce Harper and Los Angeles' Mike Trout.
Overbeck, 25, is another intriguing name. He's put up decent numbers at double and triple A (.265/.319/.474) but is without a true position. He was originally a third baseman and moved to first base this season. He also tried the outfield briefly.
He's much in the mold of Matt Rizzotti, another player the Phillies used in the AFL last season and added to the 40-man roster for a longer look. After one big-league spring training, the team decided it had seen enough.
Cloyd, 24, is having a solid season at Clearwater and Reading with 133 strikeouts in 139 1/3 innings. Shreve, 23, was a sixth-rounder in 2008 and was only recently bumped to Clearwater as a reliever.
Rosenberg, 25, attended big-league camp in 2010 and has bounced between the rotation and bullpen at Reading. He also pitched in the AFL last fall. Diekman is a 24-year-old at Reading who could be a future lefthanded reliever.
Ruf, a first baseman, posted goudy numbers at Clearwater but he's 25 and still in single A.
If any of the seven have an impressive fall league showing, they could find themselves on the 40-man roster this winter.
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