For the second year in a row, the Phillies have selected a high school pitcher in the first round of the draft.
The Phillies picked 6-foot-7 right-hander Andrew Painter with the 13th overall pick on Sunday night.
A year ago, the team selected 6-foot-5 right-hander Mick Abel.
If all goes well in the development process, the Phils could one day have a pair of impressive pitchers at the top of their rotation with Abel and Painter.
Like Abel, the 18-year-old Painter has a power arm and a classic pitcher’s body. He comes out of Calvary Christian High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He is committed to attend the University of Florida but is expected to sign and begin his pro career.
The Phillies, under second-year scouting director Brian Barber, are clearly not afraid to take high school right-handers in the first round.
Here is what Fangraphs had to say about Painter, who they had ranked 16th on their board:
Painter is a prototypical prep arm with an XXL frame, premium arm strength, and nascent feel for spin, and like many high schoolers of this ilk, he has a mid-rotation shot if everything comes together. Painter’s fastball velocity climbed throughout the 2020 summer, and he wrapped sitting 94-97 during his last abbreviated showcase outing. He has three other pitches: a mid-80s changeup, a mid-70s curveball, and a mid-80s slider that has cuttery, horizontal action right now, but for which Painter has good arm-side feel. You could point to Tyler Kolek and argue there’s some elevated risk in taking a kid this large in the first round, but his stuff belongs in the middle third of day one.
Here is the report from Baseball Prospectus, who had him 21st:
A large specimen for a teenager, Painter came into the year as the favorite to be the first prep pitcher taken. At 6-foot-8 he generates a lot of power and has good feel for spinning the baseball, needing perhaps to pull back on throwing so many different pitches (I counted six in a start in February) and trying to mess with hitters’ timing by changing his delivery patterns.
Here’s what MLB Pipeline has to say about the young right-hander:
And here’s some high praise from Pedro Martinez on Painter:
Here’s what Alex Carr, friend of the program, had to say in a series of tweets: