WASHINGTON -- The Phillies are finally seeing results on their $12 million investment in Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez.
The Cuban right-hander was promoted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley from Double-A Reading on Friday after going 0-2 with a 3.14 ERA over 14 1/3 innings in a bullpen role.
"He was ready for that move," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said.
The organization converted Gonzalez from a starter to a reliever because of issues with his throwing elbow, and the change has significantly aided the right-hander's development, especially in terms of velocity.
Sandberg said Gonzalez is throwing his fastball between 93-97 mph. In addition, he's polished his breaking ball and changeup to become a legitimate three-pitch threat.
The key now for Gonzalez will be encountering more two-inning outings, which are the type of situations the Phillies expect the 27-year-old to encounter in the Majors.
"It sounds like he's really there as far as all that goes [health-wise], " Sandberg said. "Now, it's more about experiencing. He's done back-to-back days, but just to get him ready to really be usable at this level would be his next step."