Howard, 23, struck out 94 and walked just 16 in 71 minor league innings last season. The 6-foot-2, 205-pound right-hander never pitched above double-A, however.
But his effort last season was enough to establish him as one of the organization’s top prospects.
If he doesn't make the Phillies' 30-man opening-day roster, he will be among the players training at the team's triple-A stadium in Allentown. Those players will serve as a taxi squad for the big league team.
Price said he would expect to see Howard pitching for the Phillies at some point this season.
Girardi said Howard showed “electric stuff” in Thursday’s intrasquad game.
After that contest, Bryce Harper took to social media and proclaimed that Howard should be in the starting rotation by game six of the regular season.
“I’m ready for whatever they throw at me,” Howard said.
But baseball rules will probably keep Howard in Allentown for at least the season’s opening week. If Howard isn’t on the active roster for the first week, it would delay his first season of free-agent eligibility by a year.
Still, what Harper said is a good sign of things to come for Howard and the Phillies.
"It's cool, man," Howard said. "Obviously, (Harper has) been one of the faces of baseball forever it seems like, and for him to be a Philadelphia Phillie for 13 years or however long, I think he's definitely looking out for younger guys coming up in the system, and he's trying to integrate them into the whole Phillies organization, so I think it's really cool."