Jonathan Pettibone, rated as the fourth-best prospect in the Phillies' chain by Baseball America, was elevated from Double-A Reading to Triple-A Lehigh Valley following his 6-1 victory over Altoona on Wednesday.
Pettibone, a supplemental third-round selection in the 2008 draft, is said to have the "best command in the system," as rated by Baseball America before the season, an opinion that has been supported by a string of very impressive starts. In his last eight appearances, the 22-year-old right-hander has posted a 2.48 ERA with 39 strikeouts to just six walks over 50 2-3 innings. For the season, he's 9-7 with a 3.30 ERA, hurt by only a handful of bad starts early in the season.
According to Baseball America, Pettibone, a California high school product who got a call from Cole Hamels during the Phillies' recruitment process, is said to have taken the biggest step forward of any pitching prospect over the last year. The 6-5 righty is also believed to have the best chance of reaching his ceiling, according to the magazine. With the promotion, Pettibone becomes the highest-rated prospect at Triple-A, and considering how others have stagnated or regressed, could actually become the club's best-rated prospect when BA issues its updated list.
Pettibone could replace one of several starters in the IronPigs rotation, including struggling veteran Scott Elarton or left-hander Pat Misch, who has also been spotty and is currently on the disabled list.