Overall, Linder is happy with his progress. Last season, he went 1-1, 4.43 in 15 games with the GCL Phillies. This season, Linder was 2-0, 2.08 until a disastrous relief outing on Tuesday, when he was hit for eight earned runs in just 2/3 of an inning. That turned his impressive ERA into a rough looking 9.64 mark. "I was doing pretty well, except for the rough outing today (Tuesday)," commented Linder.
Looking down the road, Linder hopes to remain with the Phillies organization and hopes to see the major leagues before too long. His five year plan has him knocking on the door of Philadelphia. "I'll hopefully be with the Phillies and scraping at the major league level, but it all depends on how I progress," said Linder.
Linder came to the Phillies right out of high school and has been seen as somewhat of a project, even though he was drafted in the 8th round. Because the Canadian high school ranks aren't seen as being a great showcase for talent, Linder took part in some showcase events in the U.S. before being drafted. Some scouts thought he tried to show too much and changed his mechanics in favor of gaining some velocity. The Phillies have smoothed out Linder's delivery and his velocity is now inching up from the high 80s mark that he showed as a high schooler.
It wouldn't be surprising for Linder to see the tiny hamlet of Batavia, New York with a promotion before the end of the summer. It also wouldn't be surprising for the Phillies to move Linder into a starting job next season to get some solid innings on his arm. Many scouts believe that he could be a capable closer down the road, but will need to gain experience and he may be best able to do that by moving into a starting rotation at some point. For now, Linder is staying in the bullpen of the GCL Phillies, but could be on the road before too long.