Phillies Prospect Tommy Joseph Changing Positions
Phils have finally decided enough is enough. "He’s not going to catch going forward," said director of player development Joe Jordan. "We’re not going to expose him to that type of risk. Tommy is very excited about the move and anxious to get back on the field playing again."
Joseph was acquired from the Giants along with Nate Schierholtz and pitcher Seth Rosin in the deal that sent Hunter Pence to San Francisco. A second-round pick from 2009, Joseph, has dealt with multiple concussions in recent years, so a position change makes sense.
In 76 plate appearances with Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season, Joseph, 23, is hitting .123 with only four extra-base hits (all doubles) and six RBI. He hasn’t played since May 11 due to his latest concussion.
But that really leaves the Phillies thin at catcher, Joseph was supposed to be the Phillies catcher of the future, when the Phillies made the deal with the Giants he was hitting .256 over parts of three seasons in the minors with 46 homers over his first 324 minor league games in the Giants system.
At the time he was 21 and Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz was 34 with his contract due to expire in 2013 - Joseph hasn't been able to stay healthy and Ruiz signed an extension to remain with the team through 2016 with a club option for 2017.
This leaves the Phillies light at catcher but does give them a decent prospect at first base, something they don't really have. Joseph has shown some power in the past, so maybe he can give the Phillies a power hitting right handed bat at first base.