Last summer the Phillies made a trade deadline move sending former number one overall pick Mickey Moniak to the Los Angeles Angels.
Moniak was selected first in the 2016 draft out of high school, and was one of the Phillies’ top prospects during his time with the team.
The Phillies dealt Mickey in a deal for Noah Syndergaard in an effort to bolster their starting rotation. It was a good move for both teams and has worked out nicely for Mickey as well.
Mickey Moniak is finding his place
After a few years of struggling, Mickey really started to turn it on with the Phils. His 2022 Spring Training sparked hope in Phillies fans, as Moniak crushed 6 home runs.
In the winding days of the Spring, he was hit with a pitch in the last game exhibition game. Moniak would miss significant time and when he returned to the club, his momentum had disappeared.
It was the right time for the Phillies to move off their former pick and it wasn’t hard to see the benefit of Mickey getting a fresh start.
He played well in his debut with the Angels, before another injury kept him off the field. Finally in 2023 however, the former Phil has stayed healthy and has shined in his limited chances.
Mickey Moniak is hitting .337/ .371/ .707/ 1.078 with 7 home runs for the Angels. A 5-hit night on Saturday was a career-best and Mickey is really hitting the ball hard.
There is a catch with his success however. The Angels are only allowing Mickey to face right-handed pitching. As a lefty batter, he consistently struggles against left-handed pitching. In modern baseball, where analytics play an important role in managing the lineup, Angels skipper Phil Nevin has maximized his strengths as a hitter.
A Trade Review
I would say there wasn’t a loser in the Syndergaard-Moniak deal. The Phillies relied heavily on Noah in their run to the World Series last season and the Angels have found a serviceable platoon player.
For Mickey Moniak, a chance to play with Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani every day and ample playing time has to be a good feeling. He’s playing really well and while it may not be for the Phillies, it’s nice to see one of our own succeeding.
The Phillies will host the Angels August 28th-30th at Citizens Bank Park. I would expect Mickey Moniak to get a chance to play in at least one of the games, so we will get an up-close look at the former prospect.
AP Photo/Laurence Kesterson