The Philadelphia Phillies might have already added another piece of their evolving positional core in outfielder prospect Roman Quinn.
Roman Quinn is a legitimate Philadelphia Phillies‘ prospect who’s on the 40-man roster. While he never played above Double-A until this month, the fifth-year professional could easily become part of the 25-man roster if all goes well in 2017. The 2011 second round draft pick out of Port Saint Joe High School, Florida, is the real deal. Quinn’s ability to get on base and employ exceptional speed make him a game-changer.
Injuries have hampered Quinn’s development to-date. Hamstring, quadriceps, oblique, a hip flexor tear and a torn Achilles tendon weren’t easy health issues to overcome during the past handful of years. But, resiliency now represents part of this young man’s character.
The native Floridian only appeared in 405 minor league games, or an average of 81 per season, since 2012. Originally a shortstop, Quinn was moved to center field after J.P. Crawford was drafted in 2013 and emerged the next year. Now, both players could appear in their employer’s major league lineup as soon as next April.
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Philadelphia needs to inject a number of players into its lineup who make regular contact with the baseball. Quinn’s bat fits that charge. Add in his speed, 181 career minor league steals, and he could dramatically alter the top of Philadelphia’s batting order for many years to come. The cascading effect one dynamic offensive player can have isn’t often dismissed by those who have played the game.
Heading into this season, the Phillies’ outfield seemed to include one potential core piece in Odubel Herrera. However, ‘El Torito’s’ severe offensive drop-off after the All-Star break created a pause in his regard by September. The second-year Phillie has been hitting well during the past few games. But, he’ll need to reestablish himself at the start of next season to maintain his starting spot somewhere in the outfield. Of course that assumes he’s not traded.
The surprisingly impressive outfield arm that Quinn possesses doesn’t match his five foot, ten inch, 170-pound frame. However, that tool represents another confirmation of developed baseball acumen. In contrast, Herrera’s in-game abilities have been exposed various times during the past two seasons. As the Phillies attempt to build a playoff contender, the front office will surely be looking to add and subtract based upon factors that go well beyond raw talent.
The ability to switch-hit could allow Quinn to become a regular major leaguer if he’s also able to produce consistently. One of his Phillies’ colleagues, Aaron Altherr, impressed for a brief stint last season and still appears to have potential. But, but he hasn’t hit well since returning from an injury late this season. He’ll likely remain part of the outfield contingent next year as well, unless his bat doesn’t come around.
Outfielder Nick Williams, who was part of the package obtained in the Cole Hamels‘ trade with the Texas Rangers last season, played in Triple-A this year. He performed decently at the plate, but wasn’t outstanding, and is considered to be a good defender. Whether, or if, this left-handed hitting 23-year-old fits into the big league picture remains to be seen.
The Phillies’ pitching depth has improved since 2015. However, team offense remains deeply challenged. Quinn has posted solid numbers since making his major league debut earlier this month. His injury history will naturally restrict all-out optimism until he’s able to stay on the field full-time.
So, Quinn simply needs to remain in shape, come to spring training next season and play well. If he’s able to hit those three marks his dream of being a regular in the big leagues could be sustained past this September.