Phillies honor the memory of minor-league prospect gone too soon


The Phillies honored the memory of Corey Phelan with a moment of silence before Game 3 of the National League Division Series at Citizens Bank Park on Friday.

Phelan, a 20-year-old pitcher in the team's minor-league system, died Wednesday after a battle with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Though Phelan was just beginning his minor-league journey, he was well-known and loved in the big-league clubhouse. As he paused from pitching to receive treatment in 2022, he visited with the big-league club several times in Philadelphia and once in August at Citi Field in New York. The left-handed pitcher was a native of Long Island. He signed with the Phillies in 2020 and pitched in five games in the minors in 2021, allowing just one run in 9⅔ innings.

News of Phelan's death hit Phillies players hard. They were taken with his good nature and courage. During his visits, he always wore a smile and a red Phillies cap.

"It was pretty tough, honestly," J.T. Realmuto said. "We got to know Corey and his family pretty well. He was always so positive, even with everything he was going through. He just brought light to our clubhouse.

"We got to pray with him a few times. And his faith was pretty inspiring for a lot of us. He definitely touched a lot of hearts in that clubhouse. And we're going to miss him dearly."

Manager Rob Thomson wore a wristband in support of Phelan's battle with cancer every day during the final weeks of the regular season. He has continued to wear it during the postseason and did so again during Friday's game.

"His strength was amazing," Thomson said.

Thomson spoke with Phelan's dad, Chris, on Thursday.

"Tremendous family," Thomson said. "We talked about Corey and the final couple of days. They're strong. They're going to get through this. They know where he's at right now."

Photo credit above: Mark Wylie

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