Mick Abel throws 2 scoreless innings against stacked Braves lineup
The Phillies are short on starting pitching. Andrew Painter, Cristopher Sanchez and Nick Nelson are all out with injuries. Ranger Suárez is making his way back from forearm tightness and Taijuan Walker is still with Team Mexico in the World Baseball Classic.
With Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest being a night game against the division rival Atlanta Braves in North Port, it was probably in the Phillies’ best interest to give the start to a minor leaguer who won’t be making the club but could use the challenge of facing a lineup full of major leaguers.
It’s why the Phillies called on top pitching prospect Mick Abel to make the trip. He struck out two and allowed only one walk against a lineup stacked with Braves regulars. The 21-year-old walked Matt Olsen, but struck out Ozzie Albies and Austin Riley. Travis d’Arnaud, Michael Harris II and Vaughn Grissom flew out against Abel.
The former first round pick split time last season between High-A Jersey Shore and Double-A Reading, pitching to a 3.90 ERA across 108 1/3 innings. He could begin the 2023 season in Triple A.
Among other positive developments, leadoff hitter Brandon Marsh hit his first home run of the spring against left hander Dylan Dodd. He lined another hard-hit ball to center against Dodd in his second at-bat, but he was robbed of a hit by Harris.
The Braves are currently leading the Phillies 2-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning. The game is available to watch for free on Braves.com.
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