While he may only be 19 years old, Andrew Painter pitches well past his years. His performance thus far has people thinking that the Phillies got a steal at 13th overall.
Yesterday’s promotion to High-A Jersey Shore is a testament to his pure dominance.
In 38.2 innings with the Threshers this season, Painter only gave up six earned runs (1.40 ERA). More impressively, he has struck out a whopping 69 batters along the way. The stuff has taken a step forward this year, while the pitching IQ still is present.
When the Phillies drafted him, he was thought of as the most advanced prep arms in the draft. The 6’7′ righthander from Fort Lauderdale was routinely touching 97, but was mostly sitting 93-95 mph. The Phillies, like a lot of draft pundits, thought there was more power in Painter.
They turned out to be right.
Once in Phillies’ camp, Painter was routinely 95-96. He threw six innings last season in the Florida Complex League. In those six frames, he allowed four hits and struck out 12 hitters. The stuff he was showing in bullpens carried over to his performances in game, and that was just the beginning.
This season, after minor mechanical adjustments, Painter is averaging around 96 mph on his fastball. Reaching back for 98 at times, he doesn’t only rely on his fastball. Painter has the chance for four plus or better offerings, including two breaking balls (slider and curveball) and his changeup. Pair that with near plus control, and you have the makings of the top of the rotation arm.
The rotation in Jersey Shore was already the strongest in the Phillies’ system. However, the addition of Painter could arguably make it one of the most intriguing in the MiLB. In addition to Painter, the BlueClaws have 2020 1st rounder Mick Abel, electric Griff McGarry, and 2022 breakout prospect Ben Brown.
Brown, 22, was the pitcher of the month for May. In four starts, he allowed just eight hits and two runs over 18 1/3 innings. He struck out 30 and walked just seven.
An organization as bad at developing talent as the Phillies are needs all the help that they can get. It doesn’t matter what position they play. Any type of talent is needed. I don’t expect Painter to be helping the Phillies any time soon, but the development is encouraging.
If he can continue this type of dominance, though, you will be seeing him sooner rather than later.