If you believe what you read pretty much everywhere, if the Phillies start 2013 without outfield additions, we’re likely to regularly see a Phillie lineup early in the season that features Domonic Brown in right and Mayberry in left.
There’s not a lot of data about those players defensively in right and left. What there is, though, suggests the Phillies might want to do it the other way around, putting Mayberry in right and Brown in left.
This has more to do with Mayberry than Brown. Mayberry has played just 131 defensive innings in right field in his career, but his defensive numbers at the position are exceptional. I don’t think it’s likely that Mayberry proves to be an elite defensive player in right field. But I do think the Phillies should play him there instead of in left when they have the option for as long as it takes for his numbers to indicate otherwise. Right now they say he’s fantastic.
Here is the UZR/150 for Brown, Mayberry and Ruf in left field:
|Player||Year||Innings in LF||UZR/150|
Again, it’s a tiny amount of data, but the data that exists say that Mayberry was terrible in left in 2009 and has been good since. Brown and Ruf haven’t been very good, but most would guess that Brown’s defensive numbers are likely to improve from his ’12 marks while Ruf’s are likely to get worse.
Here are the numbers for the three in right field:
|Player||Year||Innings in RF||UZR/150|
Brown has been atrocious in right field — so horrid in 2010 and 2011 that it was a relief in 2012 when he was merely bad. Last year was the first in which he saw time in left and his numbers in left, while still not good, were a little better than his 2012 numbers in right.
The main point here, though, is that while Mayberry has played a very small number of innings in right, he has had fantastic defensive numbers in the time he’s been there. Again, there’s close to no chance that they would continue to be that good given significant time in right. Still, I’d put him there long enough for them to go down.
I also think moving Brown from right to left has the potential to take some pressure off of him, allowing him to focus on hitting. I’m guessing it doesn’t happen, though. I think the Phillies think Brown should be a right fielder and are going to play him there. That shift may have already happened — in 2012, the first eight starts that Brown made were in left. After those eight starts, he made 43 starts the rest of the way and 38 of them were in right.
This article suggests that Cole Hamels has had shoulder soreness this offseason and that Amaro does not view it as an issue.
The article linked above also mentions the upcoming World Baseball Classic and discusses players who could be potentially leaving camp because of it. It mentions Phillippe Aumont, Tyson Gillies and Jimmy Rollins as possibilities.
This article suggests that Amaro and Manuel are not satisfied with the outfield. It’s a little tough to imagine what your outfield goals would have to be for 2013 to be satisfied with the current outfield.
The article linked directly above also says that Halladay, Howard, Rollins and Kendrick are already working out in Florida and that Howard’s lower left leg is close to 100 percent.