Minor Moves: News and Notes From the Minors

With the September call-ups right around the corner and the Arizona Fall League not long after that, it's time to take a look at who is going where.

We start with the return of Carlos Ruiz from AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre. Ruiz played in 17 games earlier this season with the Phillies and hit .234, but was 4-for-9 (.444) in his last three games with the club prior to the All-Star Break. At Scranton this season, Ruiz hit .307 with 16 homeruns for the Red Barons.

Left-hander Matt Smith returns to the minors to make room for Ruiz on both the 25 man roster and the post-season roster, should the Phillies get there. Jason Jaramillo moves up from AA Reading to take Ruiz' place on the Scranton roster.

Ruiz and Joe Thurston - both currently on the big league club - were named to the International League All-Star Team. Scranton's manager, John Russell was named the IL Manager of the Year.

While Ruiz joins the Phillies for their playoff run, the Red Barons lose a key part of their offense for the post-season. The Barons are guaranteed at least a wild-card spot in the IL playoffs and have a magic number of two to clinch the North Division.

This Angel is an Oriole

The Phillies and Orioles completed the deal that brought Jeff Conine to the Phillies. Angel Chavez heads to the Orioles as the player to be named later in the deal.

Chavez played at both AA Reading and AAA Scranton this season, hitting a combined .265 in his two stops.

Phillies in the desert

The Phillies are sending seven players to the Arizona Fall League this year and six of them are pitchers. Catcher Jason Jaramillo (AA Reading) is the only position player to be making the trip to the desert. Jaramillo has been a bit disappointing offensively (.247 in 84 games), but his defense has stayed strong this season.

The pitchers are an interesting group.

Gavin Floyd, who is hoping for a September call-up, is set to pitch in the AFL. Floyd was up with the Phillies, but struggled horribly. He has struggled with consistency and imploded in his most recent start last Friday when he allowed five earned runs in 5 2/3 innings. Prior to that start, Floyd had turned in three good outings, giving the Barons 22 innings and posting a 2.05 ERA. On the season, he has a 7-4 record with a 4.21 ERA for Scranton.

Right-handers Zack Segovia, Kyle Kendrick and Joe Bisenius will also make the trip to the AFL. Segovia is currently pitching for Team USA and pitched well in his first start to get the win. Kendrick is just 21 and opened the season at Lakewood before a promotion to Clearwater in mid-May. He has a combined mark of 11-8, 3.23 with the two clubs. Bisenius is at AA Reading and has been there for the last month after starting the year at Clearwater. Bisenius is 4-2 with four saves and a 3.38 ERA at Reading after going 4-1, 1.93 at Clearwater.

There will also be two left-handers from the Phillies' organization headed west. Giovany Gonzalez and J.A. Happ. Both are currently at AA Reading. Gonzalez has been at AA all season and is 7-11 with a 4.42 ERA, which is a bit of a disappointment for the Phillies. Gonzalez came over in the Jim Thome deal and was thought to be a quick riser. Happ started the year at Clearwater and went 3-7 with a nice 2.81 ERA. At Reading, he's 6-2 with a 2.65 ERA, giving him a combined ERA of 2.73 this season.

Come on up...

So, who will be joining the Phillies for the September stretch run?

It's unlikely that the Phillies will pull either Segovia or Michael Bourn off of the Team USA roster to join them this September. After all, with the Phillies in a pennant race, they're probably not going to mix in too many unfamiliar faces. Scratch Gio Gonzalez, who a lot of people want to see, from the list of call-ups, too. He's simply not ready. Gavin Floyd's addition to the list of AFL pitchers likely means that he won't return to the Phillies this fall, either.

Scott Mathieson will return and is likely to start one of the games of the double-header against Atlanta on Saturday. After that, he'll likely pitch only out of the bullpen, unless the Phillies need another starter somewhere along the way. Reliever Clay Condrey has had a nice season at Scranton and didn't pitch too badly when he was up with the Phillies earlier this season, so he's likely to return. Brian Sanches and Matt Smith are also likely to rejoin the club. Pitchers Eude Brito and Justin Germano are possibles, but certainly not definites for a September call.

Among the position players, Danny Sandoval and Chris Roberson are almost locks to be back with the big league club.

And, if there is any justice, the Phillies will add outfielder Gary Burnham to the 40 man roster and give him a big league uniform for the first time. The Phillies' 40 man roster currently has an open spot and Burnham deserves the nod. He hit .341 with 16 homeruns at AA Reading and set the team's career homerun mark earlier this season. The 31 year old, who has never played a day in the majors, got a promotion to Scranton last week and is hitting .308 there. Cut the guy a break and look for Chris Coste, Part Two, for crying out loud!

Keep in mind that the return of some of these players could be delayed by Scranton's playoff run.

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