Connor Phillips MLB Draft Profile

Connor Phillips
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Thirty-four players from junior colleges in Texas have declared with seven from McLennan Community College. For Connor Phillips, he is one of the entries that are set to enter the 2020 MLB draft.

Connor Phillips: MLB Draft Profile

Connor Phillips, 19, is a sophomore right-handed pitcher from Magnolia, Texas. He is listed at 6-2 and 190 pounds. Philips is listed at 95 in the MLB Top 200 Prospects, according to MLB.com.

According to PerfectGame.org, Phillips is also ranked 61 in the top 100 and 500 nationally ranked players. Additionally, he was ranked 21 nationally for right-handed pitchers. Furthermore, Phillips was graded as a 10 for a potentially high draft pick by PerfectGame.org.

Phillips has participated in several state, national, and world tournaments while earning spots on different teams. Most recently, he was named a member of the Texas All-Region 1st Team as a Perfect Game Preseason All-American. At the 2018 National Showcase, Phillips was ranked fourth out 10 players with the best fastball.

At the 2019 MLB Draft, Phillips was drafted in the 35th round (1,047th pick overall) to the Toronto Blue Jays. Originally, he was committed to playing for Louisiana State University (LSU) but decided to commit to Mclennan CC in Waco, Texas. This was a way for him to be draft-eligible as a freshman.

As a member of the Highlanders, Phillips finished the short season 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA and 27 strikeouts in six starts. In fact, Phillips was tied for first with three wins on the team. The Highlanders finished their short season 19-5 with a 5-1 conference record in the NJCAA Region 5.

Strengths

Phillips is medium athletically built with a long arm length and plenty of room to get stronger. His high three-quarters slot release gets over his front side well and really gets downhill on his pitches with some effort. He has four pitches in his repertoire: fastball, changeup, slider, and curveball.

Phillips’ quick arm can give his fastball a strong boost of velocity as it can reach between 92-96 MPH with a peak of 98. His fastball is his go-to pitch since he is able to command it very well. His curveball can reach speeds in the upper 70s with good depth.

Weaknesses

Phillips seemingly relies on his fastball than his breaking balls. This can be a double-edged sword. While his curveball can reach the upper 70s with good depth, it does not always land for strikes. This could lead to inconsistency with the pitch release.

His slider flashes a tight spin, but he is not fully consistent with it. His changeup will also need to be refined when he plays more advanced hitters.

MLB Comparison

Of the many pitchers Phillips has a comparison to, former Chicago Cubs pitcher Mark Prior would be the best comparison. Compared to Prior with his release, Phillips’ three-quarter slot release can get away with being an overhead release.

In his younger years, Prior had more of an overhead release with both his accuracy and control still in content. After the 2005 season, his accuracy and control of his breaking balls started diminishing during his later years with the Cubs, mainly in 2006.

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