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Breaking News: Phillies Trade Golson To Texas

The Phillies traded outfield prospect Greg Golson to Texas for outfielder John Mayberry Jr.

Golson — the Phillies first-round pick in 2004 — hit .282 with 13 HR and 60 RBI for AA Reading last season. He went 0-for-6 in four games with the Phils in 2008, stealing a base and scoring two runs as a pinch runner.

Mayberry — the Rangers first-round pick in 2005 — hit .263 with 16 HR and 58 RBI for AAA Oklahoma City last season. He hit 20 total home runs in 2008 between Oklahoma City and AA Fresno. The right-handed hitter, 24, batted .351 with nine home runs and 23 RBI against left-handed pitching, too.

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Ladies and gentlemen, we may have a replacement for Pat Burrell.

Talk about thinking outside the box. Mayberry was rated 17th-best Rangers prospect by the Oklahoman in April 2008. Just a few months ago, the Rangers Web site ranked him out of their top 20 prospects list. But John Sickels last November ranked Mayberry seventh. The explanation is a review of that selection:

7. John Mayberry Jr, OF, Grade B
.270/.322/.478 for Triple-A Oklahoma. Has all the tools, shows flashes of skills but still pretty raw.

Oh look, it’s Greg Golson! Actually, Mayberry is a shade better — his K/BB rates improved in Oklahoma City to 85/30. He’s 6’6″ and 230 pounds, comes with power and some speed, but nothing close to Golson in that regard. Think of him as a slower version of Golson, with potentially more pop. And he’s right-handed.

First, it’s sad to see Golson go, as he was such a huge part of the farm system for so long. But there wasn’t much room for Golson up top, plus, he seemed to be more of a project than originally thought. Regardless of what happens in left field, I don’t think Golson had a spot in the Phillies outfield anytime soon.

Now, back to my original comment. Yes, this is Burrell’s replacement. Maybe not in 2009, but for the future, very likely. Pat Gillick originally drafted him as a high school player in 1999, but he opted for college. He’s the kind of toolsy power hitter this franchise loves, and he seems to have a bit more power than Golson. It’s very possible Mayberry will platoon with Geoff Jenkins in the outfield, but it’s also possible he starts the year as a fifth outfielder, then takes over if he’s good enough. Or it’s possible he doesn’t do any of those things. To me, however, there’s a reason the Phils dumped one toolsy power-hitting outfielder for another. They like Mayberry, and want to give him a shot in the outfield.

Right now I’m favorable of the trade, but it’s basically a wash.

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