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Naylor To Start in Phillies Exhibition02/24/2011 6:33 PM ET
By Vince Rugari
Brisbane Bandits hurler Drew Naylor's Spring Training will start off with a bang, with the 24-year-old a confirmed starter for the Philadelphia Phillies in an exhibition match against Florida State University on Friday morning, Australian time. Naylor has received the nod to start the game against the Seminoles on the back of his season with the Bandits in the ABL, in which he posted a 3.21 ERA while striking out eight batters in four games. The born-and-raised Queenslander was signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent in 2004 after coming through the production line of talent that is the MLB Australian Academy Program on the Gold Coast. His breakout year was in 2007 when he made 14 starts for Williamsport in the New York-Pennsylvania League, leading the competition in strikeouts (97) and innings pitched (93.1). His strikeout rate of 9.4 helped him to earn selection as a NYPL midseason All-Star. Since that time, Naylor has progressed through the Philadelphia organsation, playing A-ball with the Lakewood BlueClaws in 2008 - then coached by Canberra Cavalry boss Steve Schrenk - before spending 2010 with the AA Reading Phillies.