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Phillies prospect off to a hot start in Australia

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A Philadelphia Phillies first base prospect is off to a hot-hitting start in his native Australia this winter.

Citizens Bank Park has been the home of the Phillies since 2004. (Destiny Lugardo/Phillies Nation)

Left-handed hitter Rixon Wingrove, born in Newcastle, has flashed his power to start the Australian Baseball League season. Playing for the Adelaide Giants, the 20-year-old hit three home runs and has an OPS of 1.551 through four games.

Wingrove began his season on Jan. 4 by going 1-for-3 with a two-RBI double against the Brisbane Bandits. He followed it up by homering in his next three games, capping it off with a walk-off, three-run home run to complete a comeback victory against the Perth Heat on Jan. 7.

Wingrove has been playing in the ABL since 2017 when he was 17 years old, and began playing with Adelaide last season. He signed with the Phillies in 2018, and spent time with the team’s rookie affiliate in the Gulf Coast League in 2018 and 2019.

The first baseman has posted an .807 OPS with six home runs in 71 games in his Minor League Baseball career to this point. He was named a GCL All-Star in 2019.

Wingrove is one of quite a few Phillies minor leaguers playing in the ABL this winter. Ten other Phillies prospects are playing for the Giants in Kendall Simmons, Luke Williams, Jonathan Hennigan, Taylor Lehman, Austin Ross, Mitchell Edwards, Jordan McCardle, Jason Lott, Kyle Glogoski and former first-rounder Cornelius Randolph. They are managed by Jersey Shore BlueClaws manager Chris Adamson.

Phillies prospects Chris Burke, Luke Leftwich and Josh Tols are also playing in the ABL for the Melbourne Aces.

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