Cornelius Randolph and JD Hammer highlight a selection of seven Philadelphia Phillies prospects who have been named to this year's Arizona Fall League preliminary rosters, which were announced on August 29.
Clearwater Threshers manager Shawn Williams will head up the Glendale Desert Dogs, whose roster includes rising talent from the Phillies, Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Pittsburgh Pirates.
Threshers hurler Trevor Bettencourt and catcher Edgar Cabral are also headed to Glendale, along with former Threshers lefty Elniery Garcia, infielder Zach Green, and Reading Fightin Phils left-hander Garrett Cleavinger.
Randolph, 20, is ranked the No. 13 prospect in the Philadelphia system according to MLB.com. He spent this past season in Clearwater, where he hit .250 with a career-high 13 home runs and 55 RBIs, while ranking seventh in the league with 55 walks. Randolph showed improvements throughout the season, as the 2015 first-round draft pick hit nearly 40 points higher (.276) in the second half than in the first.
Hammer joined the Threshers on July 27, after the Phillies acquired the 23-year-old righty along with two others from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for pitcher Pat Neshek. Hammer dominated in his 12 relief outings for Clearwater, permitting only one run on eight hits and two walks across 15.2 innings, while racking up 20 strikeouts. Hammer showcases a fastball that sits at 95 mph along with a slider in the low/mid 80's.
Bettencourt also emerged as one of Clearwater's best relief weapons in the second half of the season, posting a 1.57 ERA in 16 outings after his promotion from the Lakewood Blue Claws on July 12. The 23-year-old right-hander walked only nine batters all year in 43 combined outings, while striking out 77 in a total of 58.2 innings. A 25th round pick out of UC-Santa Barbara in 2016, Bettencourt was a South Atlantic League All Star this year prior to joining the Threshers.
A fellow SAL All-Star, Cabral came to Clearwater from Lakewood on July 27, and hit .310 with 12 RBIs in his 24 games for the Threshers. An 11th round draft pick out of Mt. San Antonio College in 2015 has thrown out 42% of opposing base stealers in his career, including a 48% success rate (44-of-91) between Lakewood and Clearwater this year.
After Tommy John Surgery sidelined him until July, Green played in 38 games for Clearwater this summer before jumping to Reading on August 17. The 23-year-old corner infielder hit .223 in a half-season, but a year ago was a Florida State League All Star and drove in a career-high 63 runs while batting .263 for the Threshers in 2016.
Joining him from Reading are a pair of southpaws in Garcia and Cleavinger. Garcia is ranked the No. 19 prospect in Philadelphia's system according to MLB.com. He pitched for Clearwater in 2016 and posted a 2.68 ERA, but missed most of this year after serving an 80-game suspension. Cleavinger will also head to Glendale, after the 23-year-old was acquired in a trade from Baltimore on July 29.
The Arizona Fall League season opens on October 10, and the championship game will be played on Saturday, November 18 at Scottsdale Stadium.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.