Phillies will find no clear fit for Jenkins and Stairs
According to Jayson Stark, the Phillies have been trying to deal Geoff Jenkins, who lost his job to Jayson Werth last season and was hurt even more by the acquisition of Matt Stairs.
"The Phillies have tried relentlessly to deal roleless outfielder Geoff Jenkins for a right-handed-hitting outfielder in the same situation somewhere else but have had zero luck -- in part because Jenkins' backloaded contract pays him $6.75 million this season (plus a $1.25 million buyout of his 2010 option)," Stark reports. "The Phillies have zero interest in right-handed-hitting free agents Jay Payton and Emil Brown. Their No. 1 right-handed-hitting bench option these days is Nomar Garciaparra, but only as a part-timer at first, third and short."
Beerleaguer: I'm not seeing it, this idea of carrying both Stairs and Jenkins. In fact, I would prefer a right-handed power bat and a speedster to either of them. Stairs is the perfect add-on for a late-season surge, and Jenkins - as Stark points out - is too expensive to carry without serving a specific role. I'm sure they'd both agree that it's in their best interests to go somewhere else. If I'd have to pick one, I'm tempted to say Jenkins because he's younger, but for what they'd truly need - someone to knock in runs off the bench - Stairs could certainly do it. Stairs is nasty enough against right-handed pitching to make opposing managers nervous. Jenkins struck fear in no one and looked terrible, basically for the entire season.
The longer they go without getting a right-handed hitter, the more I think John Mayberry Jr. is worth tracking. Mayberry smokes left-handed pitching and is the kind of big, athletic kid Charlie Manuel likes. Between Double and Triple-A, Mayberry hit .357/.398/.696 in 115 at-bats last season and was acquired from Texas for Greg Golson back in November. Mayberry would make a fine pet project for Manuel this spring; he's raw, but his power potential is considerable.
Minor transaction: The Phillies resigned catcher Kevin Nelson, who spent time with Reading last season, to a minor league contract.