More Ball …

Hola, amigos, we’re here at Bright House Field. It’s sunny and 66 with a strong breeze, but I think it’ll be in the 70s by first pitch. The Phillies play the Orioles this afternoon. Roy Oswalt makes his Grapefruit League debut.

Here’s the lineup:

  1. Jimmy Rollins, SS
  2. Placido Polanco, 3B
  3. Raul Ibanez, LF
  4. Ryan Howard, 1B
  5. Ben Francisco, DH
  6. Shane Victorino, CF
  7. John Mayberry Jr., RF
  8. Brian Schneider, C
  9. Brian Bocock, 2B


Carlos Ruiz has been in Panama since yesterday for personal reasons. He could be back Friday. … Forgot to mention this yesterday, but it was right-hander Nick Strincevich‘s birthday. He turned 96. Strincevich and outfielder Alex Pitko (11/22/14) are the oldest living Phillies. The Phillies released Strincevich June 11, 1948, to make room for Robin Roberts. Strincevich is the last player to wear No. 36 before Roberts.


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No Brown in the lineup. Good. Let him step back and regroup. There’s still time for him to get it together and go North with the team. Otherwise, Francisco is ready right now.

Don’t forget about Brown’s 13 for 62 with 24 strikeouts when he was up last season. 7 of those hits came in his first 7 games. And of course, being kicked out of the Dominican…
One day off isn’t going to solve any of his problems.

muleman, apparently you’ve already given up on him. He certainly wasn’t prepared for MLB last season, and maybe he’s not ready right now. But Brown will have a positive impact before this season is over. Maybe it will take some time in Lehigh Valley, but once he gets a little streak going he will be fine.
This happens to the best of them. I just read a book about Micky Mantle and the same thing happened to him.

I don’t know what to make of Brown at this point. I’m in no way giving up on him, but I’m wondering if he’s the answer to RF right now. Last year, in games he started (let’s forget about his PHing)
he had 10 hits in 52 AB, 2 doubles 1 HR, 4 BBS, 14 Ks and a ba of .222. His OBP was .269, his slg was .333. In other words, he was nothing special. His time in Arizona is best forgotten. What concerns me most is that Greg Gross said they had worked all the issues out. SO either A) they havent and that was BS or B) they did and Brown isn’t listening to what GG tells him or C) they did and Brown just can’t hit MLB pitching.

In any case, Francisco is hitting himself into being thought of as Werth in ’08 (when he started in a platoon with Jenkins).

more importently, what is really with Utley? Assuming the worst, who do we have to play 2B? We know Valdez’s stregnths and weaknesses. Is theier anyone else remotely able be a STARTING 2b?

phan: You consistently twist my comments. I haven’t given up on Brown, merely stating facts. I’m not ready to annoint him Mickey Mantle, either.
For every “can’t miss” prospect that you can compare to a young Mickey Mantle, I can cite a Todd VanPoppel who was all sizzle and no steak.
As of now, I haven’t seen anything out of Brown that tells me that he is a Major League ballplayer.

phan: The difference with Mantle is that he was 19 years old in his first season with the Yankees. He came out of AAA Kansas City to the Yankees in 1951, where he hit .267 in 96 games. Mickey hit .357 in 3 minor league seasons, which he started at the age of 17 in Class D Independence, KS.

Brown is 23. When Mickey was 23 he led the league in triples, home runs and slugging percentage.

and Ryan Howard was about 26 when he played his first full major league season.

muleman, I don’t care how old Mantle was. It’s irrelevant. The point is that, in the middle of his rookie season, he was sent down to the minors for over a month because he was slumping badly. He didn’t start 1951 in AAA, he started it playing RF in NY.
Roy Halladay was sent back to the minors. Brown hasn’t really had any significant time in MLB, so I wouldn’t even call it being sent back if he starts out in AAA. I’m not worried about him in the long term. Francisco is earning playing time, so going down could be for the best, better than being platooned. He needs the AB’s at this stage.

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