Phillies Remaining Patient with Young

Delmon YoungDelmon Young enters tonight’s game against the Mets hitting .222 with six doubles, six home runs, 17 RBIs and a .677 on-base-plus-slugging percentage in 148 plate appearances.

He has not been the consistent right-handed run producer the Phillies had hoped and he is a “below-average defender” in right field, according to the Phillies, but they said yesterday they are sticking with him for a couple reasons:

1. He is a slow starter. He had his best season with the Twins in 2010, when he hit .298 with 46 doubles, one triple, 21 home runs, 112 RBIs and an .826 OPS. Through his first 125 plate appearances that year, Young hit .250 with four homers, 16 RBIs and a .742 OPS. Last season with the Tigers, Young hit .267 with 27 doubles, one triple, 18 homers, 74 RBIs and a .707 OPS. Through 126 plate appearances, he hit just .226 with a .599 OPS.

Here is a look at his OPS by months over his career:

  • March/April: .645
  • May: .673
  • June: .744
  • July : .862
  • August: .741
  • September/October: .760

2. “We don’t have a suitable replacement for him,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said. John Mayberry Jr. is hitting .256 with 12 doubles, one triple, five home runs, 18 RBIs and a .752 OPS in 168 plate appearances. He regularly replaces Young in right field late in games. Certainly an argument can be made the Phillies should go with Mayberry in right because he is producing better offensively and is an upgrade defensively, but the Phillies believe Young’s upside — a American League Championship Series MVP Award in 2012, etc. — has earned him a longer look. Mayberry had a chance to earn an everyday job last season, but failed. You wonder if that plays into their thinking. In other words, the Phillies know what Mayberry offers and he has not shown the ability to produce consistently over an extended period of time. With everything as it is, the Phillies seem willing to roll the dice that Young can recapture some of his 2010 magic.

What about Darin Ruf? He is hitting .270 with 18 doubles, seven homers, 36 RBIs and a .778 OPS in 285 plate appearances in Triple-A. I think if Ruf were producing more in Triple A — although he is showing signs of heating up with a 1.055 OPS in his last 12 games — the Phillies would be more eager to bring him up, but he hasn’t so they’ll continue to give Young chances.

“He’s a much better hitter than he’s shown so far,” Amaro said of Young, “but at some point he’s going to have to start providing some offense and proving he can do some things for us or we’re going to have to see if there are other ways to improve the club. But right now we’re going to remain patient with him. And like I said, right now we don’t have a real suitable replacement.”

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MLB.com’s Stephen Pianovich visited Jimmy Rollins‘ charity event last night. Rollins offered some of his thoughts on the team’s chances going forward.

13 Comments

Just get rid of him & bring up Darin Ruf. Ruf’s upside is way higher.

i agree with you. i think amaro is destroying darin ruf,

Delmon Young is borderline worthless on this team. Let him go DH somewhere, so we can see what Ruf can do.

P.S. Platoon Mayberry & Ruf.

Ruben’s admission that he doesn’t have a suitable replacement is an indictment of his job performance.

Well said Andy! Amaro is more intent on feeding his false ego. When he buys a player he is always trying to prove that he was right. He treats Ruf like a stepchild. I think he discouraged Ruf when he sent him down before spring training was over, right after Ruf hit a game winning walkoff homerun. THe scouts are saying that Ruf has improved his fielding skills in left field, however it seems that he has been trying to hard to hit Homeruns. Recently he has focused on putting the ball in play,and his average is climbing. Ruf in left,and brown in right sounds good to me!

I like that idea, but again, as you said, Ruben has his head up his butt like usual, so we’ll never see that happen.

i don’t care what darrin ruf is hitting at lhv. one thing for sure i do know is that i would rather have him at the plate than martinez or nix.

Ruf isn’t the answer, and has no upside. He’s a 27-year old struggling with AAA pitching. He has no chance of succeeding in the majors. Put that idea to bed.

like martinez and nix are a succeeding in the MAJORS. neither one of them would succeed at lakewood.

Mike Adams goes to the DL a second time this season. It is not bad enough that Ruin signed this guy in the first place as it is that he signed him for $12 million for two years. Adams had radical, cutting edge surgery. I wish the Ruin apologist would cite at least one transaction in which the Phillies have not gotten the short end of the stick in any deal made by Ruin. The next one will be the first.

Young is a negative WAR player. He occasionally thumps a few in spurts, but he never walks and his fielding more than cancels any occasional offensive contributions. Signing him is evidence Amaro is a fool. Sticking to him shows he is a stubborn fool. Young is worthless. You’re not winning the division anyway, so play Mayberry and Ruf and much as possible and see if they improve. Then next year you’ll know what you have. And this year, either one will produce as much offense, and much better defense, then Young will. Young has had chance after chance to fulfill his potential. He’s had hot streaks, and even good years, but his career WAR does not lie.

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