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Phillip Roger Bickford
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 4", Weight 200 lb.
- School California State University, Fullerton, College of Southern Nevada
- High School Oaks Christian School
- Debut September 1, 2020
Pitcher Phil Bickford was selected by the Toronto Blue Jays and scout Jim Lentine in the first round of the 2013 amateur draft with the 10th overall pick. However, he was the only first rounder that year not to sign, opting to attend Cal State Fullerton instead. But then, seeking a quicker path to the professional ranks, he transferred to the two-year College of Southern Nevada and was selected again in the first round in 2015, this time by the San Francisco Giants with the #18 pick. He made his pro debut with the AZL Giants that year, making 10 starts but pitching only 22 1/3 innings in going 0-1, 2.01.
In 2016, he went 3-4, 2.70 in his first 11 starts with the Augusta GreenJackets of the South Atlantic League and earned a promotion to the San Jose Giants of the California League on June 19th. He was then selected to pitch for the United States team at the 2016 Futures Game. On August 1st, he was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers along with C Andrew Susac, in return for reliever Will Smith. He was 2-2, 2.73 in 6 starts for San Jose at the time. He spent the remainder of the season with the Brevard County Manatees of the Florida State League, going 2-1, 3.67 in 6 games.
He spent three plus seasons in the Brewers system, never rising above Class A, before making his major league debut in 2020. His journey included some major injuries that limited him to 6 games in the Arizona League in 2017. In both 2018 and 2019, he was with the Carolina Mudcats in the Carolina League, but pitched just 21 and 20 games, all in relief, never reaching as many as 35 innings. However he seemed to have got his career back on track in 2019, as he put up an ERA of 2.48 with the Mudcats, and struck out 53 batters in 32 2/3 innings. He was then sidelined by the Coronavirus pandemic which shut down the minor leagues in 2020, but was one of the players lucky enough to be assigned to his team's 60-player pool, meaning he would not have to sit out the entire season, but could instead work out at the Brewers' alternate training site. He was called up to the Show on September 1st, never having pitched above Class A, and was inserted into that night's game against the Detroit Tigers, which turned out to be a 12-1 blowout loss. His own contribution was allowing 4 runs on 4 hits in pitching the 8th inning.