Phillies Prospect #43: Patrick Overholt

After logging over 200 innings at Double-A, Patrick Overholt should finally get a full shot at pitching out of Lehigh Valley's bullpen at the Triple-A level. In fact, part of his issues last season might have come from not being able to stick with the IronPigs after getting a taste of things at Lehigh Valley.

Acquired: Drafted by the Phillies in the 22nd round of the 2005 Draft.
Bats: R   Throws: R
Height: 6' 5"   Weight: 190 lbs.
Birth Date: February 8, 1984
2009 Team(s): Reading (39 G), Lehigh Valley (10 G)
Games/Games Started: 49 G / 0 GS
School: Santa Clara University
2009 Ranking: 50

Why Overholt moved from 50 to 43: Patrick Overholt showed some progress last season and it came just in a nick of time. He's now thrown over 200 innings at the Double-A level and took a short trip to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, where he pitched pretty well in his ten games with the 'Pigs. While he didn't make a lot of strides in his numbers at Reading, it's very possible that with all of the innings he had thrown there, he put himself into somewhat of an auto-pilot mode and needed a challenge. That challenge was the move to Lehigh Valley, where he looked better than he has at times at the lower levels. Much of the damage that was done to Overholt's numbers came in August and September, after being returned from Triple-A to Double-A. Coming into August, he had a combined ERA of 3.71 on the season and his ERA at Reading stood at 3.89. Once August hit, his ERA at Reading ballooned quickly thanks to a horrid August - a 10.80 ERA for the month - that pushed his mark with the R-Phils to 4.83 on the season. In contrast, he had an August-September ERA of 2.70 with Lehigh Valley. That can easily show a guy who was a little deflated at being back at Double-A.

CATEGORY Patrick Overholt Eastern League
ERA 4.83 3.89
H/9 IP 9.5 8.8
HR/9 IP 1.6 0.7
BB/9 IP 5.4 3.5
KO/9 IP 7.0 7.1
WHIP 1.65 1.37
WP/9 IP 0.2 0.4
A player's stat posted in white indicates that he performed above the league average in that category. A player's stat posted in black indicates that he performed below the league average in that category.

Repertoire: Overholt still has to rely a lot on his fastball, which sits in the upper-80s. He does get good bite on the pitch and it comes late in its flight to the plate, keeping hitters a little off-stride. His curve and slider are decent, but not much to write about. 

Pitching Style: The main issue with Overholt is his control. He allowed almost six walks per nine innings last season and has a career minor league mark of just under five walks per nine; too high to truly be effective. Overholt is a side-armer and has been throughout his career. He's settled into a relief role and is more comfortable now that he can simply go at hitters with what power he does have, rather than having to finesse his way through several innings.

Projection: This is probably a make-or-break season for Overholt. He should start the year at Lehigh Valley and he's going to have to show that he can handle better hitters and throw more strikes, all without giving up more home runs. Lehigh Valley's Coca-Cola Park plays pretty fair, so his numbers certainly won't be inflated in either direction by pitching there. It's all a matter of knowing that he's reached Triple-A and there is now just one more step to make, but he has to put it all together in order to make that step.

ETA: Let's see how Overholt pitches this summer; if he pitches well, he could potentially get an audition in September or next spring. If he struggles again with his control, he's headed much more toward the fate of a journeyman pitcher who can stick around for a while, but will likely be bouncing back-and-forth between the majors and minors. The tools are generally there, but they're not all firing on all cylinders.

Patrick Overholt's career stats

Year Team W L ERA G GS SV IP H R ER HR BB SO
2005 Batavia 2 3 2.65 21 0 5 34.0 28 12 10 1 13 51
2006 Lakewood 3 3 3.15 29 0 2 45.2 37 17 16 4 26 52
2006 Clearwater 5 3 4.10 15 0 0 26.1 20 17 12 5 10 41
2006 2 Teams 8 6 3.50 44 0 2 72.0 57 34 28 9 36 93
2007 Clearwater 4 6 3.82 13 12 0 73.0 67 36 31 10 30 56
2007 Reading 6 9 5.90 15 15 0 79.1 92 61 52 10 43 54
2007 2 Teams 10 15 4.90 28 27 0 152.1 159 97 83 20 73 110
2008 Reading 3 8 5.86 49 1 10 78.1 76 59 51 10 49 73
2009 Reading 0 1 4.83 39 0 0 50.1 53 30 27 9 30 39
2009 Lehigh Valley 1 0 2.81 10 0 0 16.0 12 5 5 1 13 10
2009 2 Teams 1 1 4.34 49 0 0 66.1 65 35 32 10 43 49
Totals 24 33 4.56 191 28 17 403.0 385 237 204 50 214 376



Philly Baseball Insider Top Stories