Field of Dreams: Rutgers–Camden Baseball Standout Jeff Singer Signs with Phillies

Jeff Singer, a Rutgers-Camden graduate, signed with the Philadelphia Phillies on Oct. 15, 2015.

Jeff Singer, a former Rutgers-Camden pitcher, signed with the Philadelphia Phillies on Oct. 15, 2015.

Jeff Singer spent one season with the Rutgers University–Camden baseball program, but that season helped to catapult the left-handed pitcher into professional baseball.

The former Scarlet Raptor took a major step up the ladder Oct. 15 at Citizens Bank Park when he signed a free agent contract with the Philadelphia Phillies.

“It’s definitely a great opportunity,” said the 6-0, 195-pound southpaw, who will find out during spring training where he will be assigned to begin his career in the Phillies’ organization. “I was born in Philadelphia and I live in Cinnaminson. I’m a big Phillies fan.”

Singer is the third Rutgers–Camden player to play with an affiliated organization. Lee DeLoach was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 13th round of the 1989 MLB June Amateur Draft and played that summer at Great Falls (Montana) in the Pioneer League. Dan McKenna was selected in the 27th round of the 2003 draft by the Milwaukee Brewers and pitched for two seasons in their system with the Helena Brewers (Pioneer League) and the Beloit Snappers (Midwest League). He finished his professional career in 2005 with the local Camden Riversharks of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.

Jeff Singer pitches during a 2015 Rutgers-Camden home game at Campbell's Field.

Jeff Singer pitches during a 2015 Rutgers-Camden home game at Campbell’s Field.

Singer, a Cinnaminson resident and Holy Cross High School graduate, got his professional start with the Camden Riversharks this summer. He made his professional debut with the Riversharks July 17, working three innings against the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, allowing four hits, three walks and three earned runs. Three days later, he worked 2-2/3 shutout innings against the Somerset Patriots, walking two and striking out two without allowing a hit.

“I threw for the Phillies a couple of months ago in June, right after the draft,” says Singer, who was scouted by local Phillies scout Rowland George. “After not getting drafted and getting the opportunity to play in the Atlantic League, I learned a lot.”

In 13 games (six starts) with the Riversharks, Singer worked 49.2 innings, allowing 51 hits, walking 30 and striking out 30. He posted a 5.25 ERA.

Singer had a stellar senior season at Rutgers–Camden in 2015 on the way to earning New Jersey Athletic Conference First Team honors and New Jersey Collegiate Baseball Association Division II/III Second Team recognition. He was a two-time NJAC Pitcher of the Week (April 6 and April 27), earned ECAC Div. III Metro Pitcher of the Week recognition on April 28 and capped that week as a NCBWA NCAA Div. III National Honorable Mention Pitcher (April 30). His national honor came after pitching the seventh no-hitter in Rutgers-Camden history, a 7-0 win at Montclair State University on April 23. He struck out 10 and walked four.

Overall, Singer led the Scarlet Raptors’ staff in starts (10), innings (66), strikeouts (69) and saves (2), while tying for the staff lead in appearances (13). He compiled a 3.82 ERA and a 4-3 record as the team ace.

Jeff Singer (left) signs with the Phillies as agent Jim Ulrich looks on.

Jeff Singer (left) signs with the Phillies as agent Jim Ulrich looks on.

Singer started his collegiate career at Gloucester County College, where he was a two-time junior college All-American, set the Roadrunners’ career record for wins (21) and was named the National Player of the Year in 2013. He pitched one season at Monmouth University in 2014 – earning MAAC Pitcher of the Week and ECAC Pitcher of the Week honors on April 22 and 23, respectively – before finishing his career with the Scarlet Raptors.

On Friday, with his family present, Singer signed his contract with the Phillies before touring the Citizens Bank Park clubhouse, training facilities, and field.

“I really liked playing at Rutgers–Camden this year,” says Singer, who is ready for the next step of his career in the Phillies’ chain. “It’s a great opportunity for me and my family. I’m excited to see what the future holds.”

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