How Did The Phillies Get Ranger Suarez?
Ranger Suarez was acquired by the Phillies as an international free agent in 2012 for a signing bonus of $25,000 USD.
He made his professional baseball debut for the Venezuelan Summer League (VSL) Phillies when he was sixteen years old, throwing in three games as the team’s closer.
Suárez struck out four batters and recorded two saves in five innings of work. Suárez’s season was cut short in July after he was discovered to have violated the Minor League Baseball (MiLB) drug policy.
Suárez and fellow pitcher Daniel Cordero were both suspended for 50 games after testing positive for the anabolic drug Stanozolol.
The following year, he returned to the VSL and pitched 17 innings with a 3.18 ERA, eight runs allowed, and 13 strikeouts.
Suárez first caught the eye of the Phillies organization in 2014, when he pitched for the VSL Phillies and gave up only one walk in 80+23 innings.
That season, he went 5–4 with a 1.56 ERA and 78 strikeouts, leading the VSL in both innings pitched (80+23) and strikeouts (78).
Suárez was assigned to the Rookie League GCL Phillies in 2015. In the Gulf Coast League, he only pitched in six games due to a left elbow ailment that cut his season short.
Suárez had a 3–0 record with a 0.65 ERA in 27+23 innings pitched, with 20 strikeouts and only four walks allowed.
The next year, he was assigned to the New York–Penn League’s Class A Short-Season Williamsport Crosscutters (NYPL).
Suárez pitched a seven-inning no-hitter in the opening game of a doubleheader against the Auburn Doubledays on July 26, leading Williamsport to a 4–0 victory.