PBN Awards: Batavia Pitcher and Player of the Year

Batavia third baseman Mike Costanzo is living a dream by playing in the Phillies organization that he's been a fan of all his life. His debut in the pro ranks was a success to say the least. Meanwhile, a couple of disappointed pitchers - Andy Barb and Kyle Kendrick - showed that they deserve to be moved up the ladder in '06.

Batavia MuckDogs Player of the Year

Mike Costanzo has been everything that he was advertised when the Phillies took him with their second round pick in this past June's First Year Player Draft, which was the first selection that the Phillies got to make in the draft. Costanzo signed quickly, came into Batavia and worked hard to improve. The whole time, he was talking about his lifelong dream of playing for the Phillies. It was picture perfect.

After a bit of a slow start, Costanzo adjusted to the mechanical changes that the Phillies had incorporated and the dividends started to compound almost daily. By the end of the New York / Penn League season just about a week ago, Costanzo led the team in homeruns (11) and RBI (50) by pretty healthy margins and he finished with a .274 average. Offensively, Costanzo did all that the Phillies expected and perhaps, a little more. Defensively, he was as advertised as well - a project. He made a team high 21 errors during the season. The Phillies will certainly work with him to improve his defense when they get him into the Florida Instructional League next week and they believe that he can become an adequate defensive third baseman. Nobody is predicting a gold glove in his future, but certainly, he has to get better or a position change might be necessary.

Perhaps the biggest part of Costanzo's season was his attitude. As mentioned, he signed early and went to work right away. He accepted the changes that the Phillies wanted to make in his mechanics and worked hard to perfect them and make them part of his game plan. Even though his defensive numbers lagged, when he wasn't working on the mechanical changes at the plate, he was taking extra ground balls at third. Costanzo truly is a kid that has the perfect attitude and the fact that he grew up as a Phillies fan makes him willing to work that much harder to make it to the big leagues with the club. Costanzo is living a dream and knows it. It's good to see that kind of desire in a young player and the Phillies figure they'll see a lot more of that down the road.

Mike Costanzo's career stats

2005 Batavia 11 50 .274 73 281 47 77 17 3 0 35 89 .356

Batavia MuckDogs Co-Pitchers of the Year

Deciding between Kyle Kendrick and Andy Barb for Batavia Pitcher of the Year is a tough call to say the least. Barb came into Batavia with a bit of an attitude, having expected a full-season assignment after pitching well in the Gulf Coast League in 2004. On the upside, he used that attitude to help drive himself and had a strong season at Batavia, almost guaranteeing that he will get a promotion to Lakewood in 2006. Kendrick was also a bit disappointed that he was at Batavia, since he had pitched there in 2004 and had been advanced to Lakewood later in the season. He wasn't too surprised though, since his numbers at both Batavia and Lakewood weren't what he or the Phillies were looking for.

Kendrick led the 'Dogs in innings pitched this season (91 1/3) and tied for the team lead in wins (5) with Scott Mitchinson. He started 14 games and threw one complete game, finishing the season with a 3.74 ERA. Barb was third on the team in innings pitched (64), but also showed some talent and posted some strong numbers. Barb posted a better strikeout per innings pitched ratio than Kendrick, but his walks to strikeouts ratio wasn't as good. When you compare the two pitcher's WHIP numbers, Kendrick posted a 1.27 WHIP while Barb was at 1.34 on the season.

It's likely that both pitchers showed enough to warrant a promotion to Lakewood in 2006. Both have a lot to learn and neither projects as a top of the rotation type pitcher at this point in their minor league career.

Kyle Kendrick's career stats

2003 GCL 0 4 5.46 0 9 5 31.1 40 24 19 12 26 3
2004 Batavia 2 8 5.48 0 13 12 70.2 94 52 43 18 53 6
2004 Lakewood 3 8 6.07 0 15 15 66.2 85 56 45 33 36 9
2005 Batavia 5 4 3.74 0 14 14 91.1 94 49 38 22 70 7
Career 10 24 5.02 0 51 46 260.0 313 181 145 85 185 25

Andy Barb's career stats

2004 GCL 2 2 2.57 0 15 4 35.0 29 12 10 7 56 4
2005 Batavia 3 2 3.23 0 11 11 64.0 59 27 23 27 57 7
Career 5 4 3.00 0 26 15 99.0 88 39 33 34 113 11

Philly Baseball Insider Top Stories