Yesterday, the Phillies released former first round pick from 2008, Anthony Hewitt. Taken with the 24th overall pick in out of Salisbury Prep (CT), Hewitt never lived up to his first round status and made it only to Double-A over his seven year career in the minor leagues.
Since being signed for $1.38 million, Hewitt's slash line was .223/.264/.370 over seven seasons at five minor league levels. His best season hitting-wise was in 2013 with the Reading Fightin Phils, when he hit .244 and smacked 16 homers and 51 RBI's to go along with a .726 OPS. While 16 homers may look good to the eye even with a low batting average, his strikeout numbers were extremely high. He struck out 307 times in 945 plate appearances with Lakewood over two seasons there. With Clearwater and Reading, he struck out a combined 324 times in 988 plate appearances over four seasons. In his career, he struck out 763 times and took a base on balls just 91 times.
This season, Hewitt saw the majority of his time with Reading, where was hitting just .140 in 34 games that included 39 K's in 103 plate appearances. He was demoted to Clearwater, where things didn't get any better, hitting .129 in eight games, striking out 15 times in 31 at-bats.
Originally drafted as a shortstop, Hewitt switched to third base but because of his defense struggles in the infield, he was eventually moved to the outfield.
Since 2003, the Phillies have drafted high schoolers eight out of 12 times, with only four of those selections reaching the big leagues. Joe Savery's 44 games played leads the pack for the underachieving drafts over the past decade.
Brandon Apter, Publishing Editor for Philliedelphia.com