One of the Phillies' top prospects snuck into MLB.com's Top 100 list, updated this week. Shortstop Bryson Stott, the Phils' first-round pick in 2019 out of UNLV, is No. 100.
The only other Phillie in the Top 100 is right-hander Mick Abel, their 2020 first-round pick. The 20-year-old Abel is ranked 66th.
Stott, who turns 24 on October 6, was the Phillies' Futures Game representative in 2021 and has enjoyed a strong season spent mostly at Double A. He's hit .296/.363/.481 for Reading with 21 doubles, 10 homers and 35 RBI in 333 plate appearances. The slash-line is a continuation of what Stott did in his first pro year in 2019, when he hit .295/.391/.494.
The left-handed-hitting Stott is more contact than power at this point, but he was an extra-base hit machine in August and has a skill set the Phillies could use both offensively and defensively. When he arrives in the majors, he should improve an infield defense that has struggled all season.
Shortstop Didi Gregorius has had a brutal year with the bat and glove. He is in the first season of a two-year, $28 million contract. The Phillies signed him to that deal knowing it would likely be a bridge to Stott, but they needed more from Gregorius than he's provided. That includes right now, with the Phillies in desperate need of lineup protection for Bryce Harper. Gregorius is hitting .221 with a .280 on-base percentage and a slugging percentage exactly 100 points below his mark last season.
The Phillies have a lot to figure out in the infield for 2022. Where will Alec Bohm play? What about Rhys Hoskins? Will the National League adopt the designated hitter? Can Gregorius be traded? If not, what do you do with him? Will Stott make the team out of camp?
The Phillies have not been shy to quickly promote their recent college first-rounders to the majors. Aaron Nola was in the Phillies' rotation a year after he was drafted. Adam Haseley was in the Phillies' lineup less than two years after he was drafted. Bohm made it up in just over two years and likely would have been up earlier if not for service time considerations.
Unlike those three, Stott did lose a valuable year of development time last summer when the pandemic shut down the minor-league season. He hasn't shown much rust this season. He was the Phillies' Minor League Hitter of the Month in May and again in August when he hit .408 with 15 extra-base hits and a 1.107 OPS in 26 games.