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Philip Clarke Working Hard Behind the Plate

Philip Clarke Working Hard Behind the Plate

May 15, 2022

Photo credit: Nati Harnik / AP

Catcher Philip Clarke is working hard at both phases of the game this season for Double-A New Hampshire. Clarke, who is well-known for being a member of the 2019 Vanderbilt Commodores’ team that won the College World Series; has come a long way since his days in the SEC.

“The transition between college and pro ball is pretty difficult in my opinion,” said Clarke. “It takes a little adjustment but there are definitely a lot of areas where you can implement the college game.”

And Clarke is definitely finding ways to advance in the professional game. His number one focus since turning pro is to become a better all-around catcher behind the plate.

“My development as a catcher has been a main focus of mine ever since turning pro,” explained Clarke. “I hope that I am becoming better at handling the pitching staff as well as receiving and controlling the game.”

Managing a pitching staff is something that Clarke takes a lot of pride in, too, “I love working with our pitching staff,” Clarke added. “Our starters and bullpen arms are awesome and are really open to conversations. I enjoy having a little responsibility of the staff and integrating that into how I judge my own play.”

Another area where Clarke is working hard is at the plate. Currently slashing .227/.338/.333 with an OPS of .671 after 66 at-bats in Double-A; present an opportunity for Clarke to implement some of the adjustments he has made to his approach since turning pro.

“My plate approach definitely needed some development once I got to pro ball,” stated Clarke. “My first half of the 2021 season was a struggle, but I came out of it learning a lot. I think there’s a lot of experiences that come from struggles that I can use to my advantage this year.”

And all of Clarke’s work at the plate as well as behind it will be challenged by the pitchers and lineups in Double-A.

“Double-A pitchers are extremely confident in their stuff and willing to throw anything anytime,” explained Clarke. “Every team’s lineup is so deep and good 1-9 in Double-A. There’s no drop off anywhere.”

Be sure to follow Philip Clarke, as he continues to work hard at both phases of the game in pro ball.