By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – According to Baseball America, the top prospect in the Phillies organization is taking the ball every fifth day for the Double-A Reading Phillies.
Right-handed pitcher Trevor May was a 4th-round pick of the Phillies back in 2008. This is his first-year at Reading – he went 10-8 with a 3.63 ERA at Single-A Clearwater in 2011 – and he is pleased with his steady rise through the system.
“When you are first drafted, you think it is going to be a fast ride to the big leagues. Most of the time that’s not the case. I’m definitely happy with the progress I’ve made and I feel like every challenge that I’ve had thrown at me, and every expectation I’ve had I’ve been able to fulfill. I had a couple of steps back I’ve had to take throughout the career. I feel like I’ve rebounded pretty well.”
Listen to Matt Leon’s interview with Trevor May:
May is actually fighting through a rough patch right now. Since a blazing 5-0 April, May has gone 0-4 (Note: this interview was conducted prior to May’s last two starts).
May’s manager at Reading, Dusty Wathan, was also his skipper at Clearwater, and he says the 22-year-old hurler brings a lot to the table.
“Just his build, he’s just built like a pitcher (6’5″, 215). If you were going to build a starting pitcher you would start with a body like that. Mentally, he’s a very smart kid. He realizes what he needs to do out there. He’s growing into his body now and he’s able to control his body. I think a couple years ago, there were times where as a young guy growing up and being as big as he is, his coordination wasn’t there. He’s really starting to feel that. He can really feel and make adjustments on the fly as far as his stride length and where his hands are and things like that.”
May breaks down his repertoire.
“I throw a four-seam and a sinker, (they) are my fastballs. I’ve been throwing my curveball since I was drafted and my change-up’s come a long way. And I’m adding a slider, cutter pitch that we’ve been working on a lot lately just to supplement the curveball as a different look and maybe add some ground balls.”
You don’t get to be rated the top prospect in an organization by accident, and May has garnered a lot of attention, but Wathan says he can continue to get even better.
“Definitely just continue with his command and be able to get his curveball going consistently. I think he’s had a good change-up the last year or so. His curveball use to be a better pitch than his change-up, I think he went the other way around and we just need to continue to have him keep throwing his change-up and get consistency with it. His fastball command is pretty good right now and he just needs to continue to pitch down in the zone.”
May won the Paul Owens Award in 2011 as the Phillies’ minor league pitcher of the year.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.