The Phillies offense is clearly struggling. As a team, the Phils are (out of 16 NL teams) 14th in runs, 16th in walk rate, 14th in OPS, and for you advanced metric fans, 14th in wOBA. They swing at pitches at a higher rate than all NL teams except the Pirates, and swing at pitches outside of the zone more than any other team. As evidenced by their 3rd-best strikeout rate, they can put the ball in play, but they can’t produce runs.
The one thing that stands out is the lack of power from John Mayberry Jr. Last year, his isolated power was .240, meaning that his slugging percentage was 240 points higher than his batting average. It was the highest on the team, and would’ve been top 10 in the NL had he qualified. Mayberry also ended the year with a .854 OPS, which was second on the Phillies only to Hunter Pence. He had a great year, and we all loved him for it, but so far this year he’s been sub-par.
Mayberry is hitting .189 with no walks and ten strikeouts. He has one extra-base hit.
His plate discipline is out of wack and his swing is long. Mayberry is popping up hittable pitches and at times his head is coming off the ball.
One wonders how much longer the Phillies can stick with Mayberry. Jayson Werth ran with the outfield vacancy he filled once upon a time. What is happening now is more similar to what Ben Francisco went through last season, except Francisco produced runs in April before he stopped hitting.
So with Mayberry struggling to find his stroke, could Ruben Amaro Jr. give Domonic Brown another shot? Brown is currently at Triple-A playing for the IronPigs, where he has a .623 OPS in 53 plate appearances. He has four extra-base hits in 53 plate appearances and has at drawn three walks.
The plan was to keep Brown at Triple-A for as long as possible this season to allow him to grow defensively and rebuild offensive confidence.
But the Phillies are almost at rock bottom in terms of offense, so a call-up could be possible even if Amaro is against it.
Adding Brown to the lineup wouldn’t be a miracle for the Phillies, but it would be a step in the right direction.If you’re not going to be getting much offensive production from the left fielder as it is, why not give that time to a player who could grow into a better offensive player than Mayberry?
It may be a little early, but these are the kinds of things you think about when your offense has scored 37 runs in 13 games.