Keeping Up with the Astros Prospects: Brett Phillips

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Keeping Up with the Astros Prospects: Brett Phillips

No player in the Astros organization has had his stock rise as much as outfielder Brett Phillips. Phillips could be the MLB first six tool player. Also, in addition to his regular five tools, Phillips has also added Possum wrestling to his resume with his experience at Quad Cities. He was named the Astros minor league hitter of the year in 2014, and despite a slow start, he’s on his way to repeating in 2015.

This season at High Class-A Lancaster, Phillips has a slash line of .319/ .369/ .536/ .905. He has scored 28 runs, nine doubles with three triples, and five homers while driving in 18 runs during the 2015 season. He is an all-around great guy, who has a Lance Berkman type of sense of humor. Look for him to become a steady presence in the Astros lineup in the future.

CTH: When I first approached you for an interview, you asked me to wait because you were struggling. What adjustments have you made to get back on track?

Phillips: Honestly it was the first week of the season, and I was clearly trying to do too much. I ended up just telling myself to slow down and not try and get three hits in one at-bat because that’s physically impossible. It took me a couple games to get back into the swing of things, but I’m glad I struggled a little bit in the beginning it was a good learning experience.

CTH: What’s more likely to happen first? You getting promoted to Double-A or your buddy Lance McCullers being promoted to Triple-A?

Phillips: Lance going to Triple A! he will be there sooner then you know it ;)0.23

CTH: The past two years you have started at the level at which you ended at the previous year, has that been good for you developmentally? Or would you rather be challenged earlier at the new level?

Phillips: I think it has been great for my development. Even though, I played well last year when I was called up; it gives me an opportunity to gain confidence before going into the next level instead of being thrown right into the fire!

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CTH: What part of your game have you been the proudest of improving since you have been in the minors? (Not possum wrassling)

Phillips: I have been told that I’d have below average power and would never hit any HOME RUNS by scouts going through the draft process. That I didn’t have any more room for improvement because of my contact swing and I’m proud to have somewhat proved them wrong and will continue to prove them wrong! So I’m proud of my ability to have gotten stronger and be able to hit some home runs now.

CTH: Is Morgan Ensberg as candid as he is on Twitter?

Phillips: Yes, he is not only a great coach but a great person as well. He’s a straight shooter and will tell you exactly how it is. Good dude.

CTH: How does the conflict in Ukraine effects the Russian oil exports industry?

Phillips: I’m not up on my current events throughout the world. But that’d be a good question for my host dad Andy Wilson (Jack Wilsons brother), and I’ll see what he has to say. But interesting question haha.

CTH: That was supposed to be a gag question. Since you brought it up, can you tell us about the host dad concept and the experience as a minor league player in terms of lodging?

Phillips: It’s always so great when a family opens up their home to you and allows you stay there for free. As minor leaguers, we aren’t making very much money, so it’s just awesome that they do that. I’ve been very fortunate the past two seasons having the opportunity to stay with two solid Christian host families. They cook dinner for me; they come to the games, we hang-out as if I were living in my own house! It’s awesome, and I’m very thankful for these two families, I have made life long friends!

CTH: What are your thoughts on deflate gate and Tom Brady’s four-game suspension?

Phillips: I’m not a fan of cheaters in any sport or life in general. I don’t know if the suspension is bad enough, but I do know is that I can’t respect people who cheat so I hope he learns his lesson.

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CTH: He probably won’t learn his lesson. Now the tough question, with only three stolen bases so far, are you running like you normally doing? Are you having trouble finding the right time or opportunity?

Phillips: I’m not one to make excuses, and I don’t have any excuses for you, so I’m just getting thrown out. Plain and simple, do I think I will end up with over 25 bags this season, of course, that’s a goal! But as of right now I need to step my game up in that area.

CTH: Which Astros player are you hoping is still around when you make it?

Phillips: I hope they’re all there when I get there, but if I had to choose one, I’d choose Springer. I had the chance to hang out with him a little in Spring training, and he’s a great guy. He gives great advice in hitting and playing the overall game, and he will take the time to go into depth too. But he’s just a stand-up guy, and I appreciate teammates like him.

CTH: Do you have a statement on Lance McCullers making the big league team?

Congratulations Lance on getting your big league call up. I couldn’t be more happier for you, and I know you’re going to tear it up, continue to keep God first and everything else with take care of itself. Love you, brother! Updated 1:57 pm.

CTH: Thanks as always for the interview Maverick, we wish you luck until we talk again.

Phillips: Anytime brother, I appreciate you taking the time to interview us Minor Leaguers! Talk with you soon!… Brett PhillyCheesesteak.

Previous Keeping Up with the Astros Prospects

Part 1: Keeping up with the Prospects: Preston Tucker

Part 2: Keeping up with the Prospects: Lance McCullers

Part 3: Keeping up with the Prospects: Brady Rodgers

Part 4: Keeping up with the Prospects: Carlos Correa

Part 5: Keeping up with the Prospects: Vincent Velasquez

Here are links to my prior interviews:

Astros Prospect: Tony Kemp

Astros Prospect: Conrad Gregor

Astros Prospect: Brett Phillips (He wants to go by Maverick)

Astros Prospect: Preston Tucker

Dan Straily Interview

Astros Prospects: Joe Sclafani

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