The Phillies promoted prospect Carlos Tocci to triple A on Thursday and could be tempted next month to try him in the majors.
Tocci, a righthanded-hitting centerfielder, batted .307 with a .362 on-base percentage in 113 games for double-A Reading. The 21-year-old needs to be added to the 40-man roster after the season, but the Phillies could simply add him a bit early when rosters expand in September. Tocci is a major-league defender with a smooth swing but lacks power. Just 28 of his 132 hits this season have been for extra bases.
Tocci will play every day at triple A and give the IronPigs a needed boost as they try to stay in the International League playoff hunt. They have just three wins in their last 14 games and are just one game behind Rochester in the wild-card race.
Haseley to Lakewood
Adam Haseley, the Phillies’ first-round pick in June, will end his season at single-A Lakewood as he plays for his third team since being drafted. The outfielder batted .270 in 37 games at short-season Class A Williamsport after being promoted from the Gulf Coast League.
Haseley will split time at Lakewood with fellow centerfielder Mickey Moniak, last June’s No. 1 pick. The promotion allows the Phillies to manage the prospects as they finish their first minor-league seasons. One can play in the outfield while the other is the designated hitter. It will be interesting to see where they start next season, as one will have to switch positions if they end up on the same team.
From Russia with glove
Anton Kuznetsov, a 19-year-old lefthander from Moscow, has been dominant in the Gulf Coast League. He allowed his first earned run Thursday after logging 11 scoreless appearances, mostly as a reliever. Kuznetsov, whose middle name is Mikhailovich, has a 0.42 ERA in 21 1/3 innings with 20 strikeouts and just three walks. Only one Russian, righthander Victor Cole (Pirates, 1992), has played in the majors since 1932.
Tomscha hitting at Reading
Damek Tomscha, a 25-year-old third baseman and first baseman, has hit well since reaching double A last month. He batted .330 with a .904 OPS in his first 29 games at Reading after hitting .303 with a .854 OPS in 57 games for high-A Clearwater. The Phillies drafted him out of Auburn in the 17th round in 2014, and he also has played left field.
“He’s having some quality at-bats and not trying to do too much,” Reading manager Greg Legg said. “He’s playing the game and playing with confidence. When these guys play with confidence, their at-bats are better and everything is better. He’s a really confident hitter, and I like where he’s at. He’s believing in himself.”
Scott Kingery: Singled twice Thursday to extend his hitting streak to 15 games. He is just the second IronPigs player to ever have two hitting streaks in a season of at least 14 games, joining Mike Cervenak in 2008.
McKenzie Mills: The 21-year-old lefthander acquired from Washington for Howie Kendrick has struck out 16 batters without a walk in his first three starts with high-A Clearwater. He has cut his walk rate by 75 percent over the last two years.