Twitter reports say the Phillies optioned Domonic Brown to Triple-A, which is where he will likely spend the rest of the season learning left field.
Brown, 24, went 6-for-20 (.300/.333/.650) with a homer and a pair of triples in early Grapefruit League play, but his bat was overshadowed by continued blunders in left field, in addition to minor neck and thumb soreness that knocked him out of action. GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has stated that Brown would ideally spend an entire season tightening the screws roaming left field in Lehigh Valley, and with John Mayberry, Laynce Nix and either Scott Podsednik or Juan Pierre expected to share left field, there’s simply no room for Brown to get the playing time he requires. Amaro has previously lamented the decision to push Brown to the majors before he was ready. Last season with the club, he hit .245/.333/.391 with five home runs in 210 plate appearances, manning right field before the trade for Hunter Pence.
Beerleaguer: Brown's blunders and injuries were a blessing in disguise. The Phillies won’t succumb to Brown temptation for the foreseeable future. He isn’t ready to field his position, and that's a must on this team.
Keep Blanton? I keep reading how the Phillies have shied away from shopping Joe Blanton, who has looked sharp. On one hand, Blanton’s value may never be higher. He’s reportedly been sharp, and his season – a contract year – appears to be full of promise. On the other hand, I can see why they’d want to keep him, and it has everything to do with Kyle Kendrick. The Phillies may not be able to afford to move Kendrick out of the bullpen and into the rotation. Someone needs to soak up the extra innings. Guys like Jose Contreras and Antonio Bastardo are one-inning guys, or less, and need to be monitored. Chad Qualls is a one-inning guy. David Herndon and Michael Stutes might give you two innings, but they’re both on the bubble to even make the club. The Phillies could start the season with a six-man bullpen because of all the positional uncertainty. That means all the second lefty hopefuls will be pushed aside and they’ll chose between Herndon and Stutes.