"It's been a lot of fun. I have a lot of people to support me and it adds a lot of pressure, but I think the pressure is from people really caring and I think that is something that really drives me and makes me work a little harder," Biddle said.
For the time being, the Phillies' top prospect will continue to pitch for Double A Reading. This season, Biddle is 3-8 with a 3.19 ERA in 93 1/3 innings.
"He's thrown the ball well this year," Reading manager Dusty Wathan said. "He was the Eastern League's Player of the Month in April; he has got an outstanding ceiling and he is one of the top pitchers in this league."
Biddle's success this season has not just been noticed by the Phillies, but also around baseball. He is one of four Reading players on the Eastern League's Eastern Division All-Star roster and will join third baseman Maikel Franco in the All-Star Futures Game on Sunday at New York's Citi Field, where he will pitch for the U.S. team.
"Those are just goals that I had and they are just steppingstones to where I want to get," Biddle said of his achievements so far. "They are honors that put me in company with talent that is so amazing, but I understand that there is so much more that I want to accomplish and so many things I have to do to get to where I want to be."
In order to be the player he hopes to be, Biddle said he still has a lot to improve on. With a fastball ranging from 89 to 95 mph, a curveball, changeup and a newly developed slider, only Biddle can control his fate with the organization.
"I need to improve on everything," Biddle said. "I definitely need to improve mentally and reduce the physical mistakes I have been making, like missing up with my fastball and missing my spots a little bit. I also need to be consistent, because the difference between a big-league pitcher and a minor league pitcher is consistency."
Even though Biddle was not promoted when Phillies pitcher John Lannan landed on the disabled list in April, the team continues to monitor his progress but will not rush him to the majors until he is ready. Wathan thinks Biddle can be a middle-of-the-rotation guy for the Phillies in a couple of years and sees him eventually fighting for a spot atop the rotation with veteran Cole Hamels.
Biddle remains focused and works hard in Reading, but acknowledged his desire is to play in Philadelphia as soon as possible. He would welcome a spot in the Phillies' bullpen and joked that he would even play shortstop if that meant he would be promoted to the majors.
"I'd really love to be in Philadelphia this year, but I don't know when it will happen. I would have told you that last year, too," Biddle said. "I would love to get called up tomorrow. I feel that mentally and physically I'm ready and I can handle it. There's a lot to learn and there are a lot of good pitchers in front of me and part of the process is waiting my turn."
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