Top Prospect #14: Edgar Garcia

2005 was Edgar Garcia's first season of pitching in pro ball. The Phillies signed him as a 17 yeaar old and he made his debut in the Gulf Coast League last season, starting 10 games. Garcia has potentially dominating stuff, it's just a matter of seeing how he develops before we can get a hint at just how good he'll be.

The Phillies were following Edgar Garcia for almost a year even while he was somewhat under the radar. Being one of the first teams to know about Garcia gave them an edge and they were able to sneak him into Clearwater for a personal workout / audition in the fall of 2004 just before he was supposed to play in the Perfect Game event, which would have brought him much more attention and very likely, a higher price tag. Instead, the Phillies got him at a pretty easy to swallow rate and went to work on fine tuning him.

In his first pro season, Garcia showed a lot of promise and did pretty much what was expected of him in the Gulf Coast League. He just turned 18 last September, so there isn't a need to rush him, especially since it's thought that once he develops and matures a little more, he'll move through the system at a pretty quick pace.

'05 Gulf Coast League 4 4 3.56 0 10 10 55.2 63 26 22 4 13 42

Acquired: Signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent in October of 2004.

Repertoire: Right now, Garcia's best pitch is his fastball, which generally in the low-90s. His curve and change-up are still developing, but should become above average pitches for him. He has good arm speed on his change-up and there was definite improvement on the pitch during the 2005 season. His curve is going to take a little more time, but could wind up being a very effective pitch for him.

Pitching: The first thing that caught scout's eyes was Garcia's smooth delivery. His mechanics were pretty good, so there wasn't too much that the Phillies had to work on when they got a hold of Garcia. He's got good size (6' 2", 190 pounds) and with some filling out, it's likely that he's going to put a little more velocity behind his fastball before too long. Right now, he sometimes pumps his fastball up to about 94 miles per hour and eventually, scouts believe that he should be able to keep it there consistently. His attitude and poise are excellent and he's not afraid of working to improve.

Projection: Keep in mind that 1.) The Phillies are very cautious with young pitchers and 2.) Garcia just turned 18 last September. Because of those two things, it's likely that Garcia will be kept in extended camp until the New York - Penn League starts and then he'll be sent to Batavia. The theory is that once he hits the full-season leagues, Garcia will move pretty quickly, so there is no point in pushing him. The Phillies have time to work with Garcia and it's likely that they'll take advantage of that time. Some scouts believe Garcia could move to Lakewood now, but that's not likely.

Comparison: Scouts believe that Garcia will have stuff that could equal Brett Myers. He's ahead of where Myers was at the same age and has a better attitude. It's not out of the question that Garcia will be at least a number three starter, but more likely perch himself atop the rotation in the number one or two spot once he gets comfortable.


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