Position: Outfield

DOB: May 30, 1994

Height: 6’0″ / Weight: 185

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

40-man roster: Yes

How acquired: Trade with Astros (July 30, 2015)

Profile: Acquired from Houston in 2015 along with fellow outfielder Domingo Santana and pitchers Adrian Houser and Josh Hader as part of the deal that sent Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers to the Astros, Phillips was originally a sixth round pick out of high school in 2012 and signed away from an offer to North Carolina State. He appeared in 54 games for Houston’s affiliate in the GCL that same year, then split 2013 between Greeneville and Class-A Quad Cities. He burst onto the prospect scene in 2014 with a breakout season, seeing time at both Quad Cities and High-A Lancaster and went on to be named the Astros Minor League Player of the Year. He opened 2015 back at Lancaster before earning a bump to Double-A Corpus Christi in late June, before being traded to Milwaukee. Phillips finished out 2015 at Double-A Biloxi and returned to the Shuckers in 2016 where he spent the whole season. A gifted athlete with a rocket arm and above average speed, Phillips looks comfortable in centerfield though many feel he may move to right in the future due to the Brewers depth in center. A career .295 hitter entering the 2016 season, Phillips struggled with strikeouts and didn’t show the same bat to ball skills he had in previous seasons. There have been questions about his ability to generate power in the past and while he did manage 16 home runs last season, Phillips may need to shorten up his swing to make more contact, which could result in less power numbers.

2012: After starring on the baseball diamond as well as the gridiron as a high school wide receiver, Phillips signed with the Astros following the draft for a reported $300,000 and started his career with Houston’s affiliate in the Gulf Coast League, where he saw action in 54 games. He hit .251 and showed a good eye at the plate, drawing 28 walks and posting an on base percentage of .360 while playing almost exclusively in center field.

2013: Phillips opened the 2013 season in extended spring training, before he was sent to Low-A Quad Cities in mid-June. He saw action in 12 Midwest League contests for the River Bandits but hit just .231 before being sent down to Greeneville in the rookie Appalachian League. He finished out the season there, appearing in 29 games and hit .247 with seven doubles while once again showing a good walk rate and posting a .371 on base percentage.

2014: With a brief stint in the Midwest League in 2013 under the belt, Phillips returned to Quad Cities to start 2014 and experienced much better results in what would turn out to be a breakout season for the young outfielder. In 103 games he wound up hitting .302/.362/.521 with 46 of his 116 hits going for extra bases. He racked up 21 doubles, 12 triples and 13 home runs while driving in 58 runs and scoring 68. Phillips was named to the Midwest League’s All-Star team and in early August was promoted to High-A Lancaster where he finished out the season with similar success. In 27 games with the Jethawks, he hit .339 with eight doubles, two triples and four home runs, posting an OPS of .980 en route to being named the Astros Minor League Player of the Year.

2015: After a month of California League action the year before, Phillips went back to High-A to open the 2015 season and found the hitting conditions in Lancaster to his liking. In 66 games he posted a line of .320/.379/.588, banging out 19 doubles, seven triples and 15 home runs, numbers which easily earned him a place on the Cal League All-Star squad. He received a promotion to Double-A Corpus Christi in late June and hit .321 in 31 games there before being traded to Milwaukee. Upon joining the Brewers, Phillips was assigned to Double-A Biloxi where he finished out the year by hitting .250 in 23 games for the Shuckers down the stretch.

2016: With just two months of Double-A ball under his belt the season before, Phillips made his way back to Biloxi to open 2016 as the Shuckers centerfielder. In 124 games with Biloxi, he hit just .229/.332/.397 and struck out at an alarming rate, punching out in roughly one-third of his plate appearances. He did continue to show power potential, collecting 36 extra-base hits, including 16 home runs, but his overall numbers were down notably from the previous two seasons, raising some questions about his ability to handle more advanced pitching as he continues to climb through the minors.

MPP Pre-Season Prospect Rankings
2017 (#7)
2016 (#2)