Phillies Actively Looking for Center Field Upgrade – Phillies Nation
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Phillies Actively Looking for Center Field Upgrade

Ruben Amaro Jr. addressed the media today, telling Todd Zolecki and others that the club is actively looking to upgrade the center field position after receiving a 6-8 week timetable for Ben Revere‘s return from a broken foot. The Phillies have played second baseman Cesar Hernandez in center field yesterday and today at Triple-A Lehigh Valley and have asked Hernandez to report to Double-A Reading during the Triple-A All-Star break, including skipping the Triple-A All-Star game for which he was selected. Amaro specifically stated that the team is looking for an upgrade over today’s hero John Mayberry Jr. but they will find a pretty thin trade market. The Blue Jays, who entered today 11.5 games out of the AL East race do have Colby Rasmus, Rajai Davis, and former Phils propsect Anthony Gose, who all are able to play center field, but the Jays may be reluctant to trade any of them because of their relative youth and inexpensive, team-friendly deals.



  1. bacardipr

    July 14, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    I would imagine Davis would cost them a good prospect.

  2. Double Trouble Del

    July 14, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    I expect that Davis would be they type of player they could acquire but Gose and Rasmus are intriguing. I have always been fascinated by Rasmus’ talent although his strikeouts this year are wildly high.

  3. CS

    July 14, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    Would be nice to get Gose back. Thoughts on Mike Morse?

    • EricL

      July 14, 2013 at 9:06 pm

      Morse wouldn’t help the CF situation at all. He’s just a better hitting version of Delmon Young.

      Davis might be available, as he’s older (31, I think?) and the Jays don’t really have a regular spot for the guy and he’ll see his playing time further cut in another week or so when Melky Cabrera returns from the DL. That said, he still has some use as a pinch-runner/defensive replacement, I suppose, so they won’t just give him away.

  4. Hogey's Role

    July 14, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    What about Gillies? Why not see what he can do

    • Hogey's Role

      July 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

      None of those three guys mentioned are a big upgrade over Mayberry, or anyone in our system for that matter

      • Brian

        July 14, 2013 at 9:58 pm

        Agreed about Gillies. Can play center field with no problem, and wouldn’t kill you with the bat. Plus, he’s on the 40 man.

        If Rube gives up an actual prospect for a center field rental, I’m gonna put a lot of furry animals on the endangered species list.

  5. George

    July 14, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    I think if the Phils had a high opinion of Gillies right now, he’d be brought up, and they wouldn’t be trying Hernandez in center. Gillies was shipped down a notch for a while this year and he always seems to be injured. He has very little experience above AA, and just because he may have hit well at a couple of lower levels doesn’t mean he’s ready for the majors.

    Amaro wants an upgrade, not a question mark.

    • Hogey's Role

      July 14, 2013 at 10:52 pm

      not many players who are or become major leaguers have a lot of experience above AA.. most of the time you go from AA to the majors… AA is a more competitive league……

      • devin

        July 15, 2013 at 4:12 am

        That’s sort of kind of almost true if you’re talking about pitchers. Sort of. Kind of. Almost. But it’s completely flat out wrong if you’re talking about hitters.

        With that being said, Gillies got sent down from AAA to AA to adjust his swing and has had excellent results after the adjustment. He then got promoted back up to AAA and has continued to hit very well.

    • wbramh

      July 15, 2013 at 3:28 am

      He’s not going to find an upgrade over JMJ.
      Best to do nothing rather than throw away the few decent pickings left in the system for 8 lousy weeks of borrowed mediocrity from another team.

      • George

        July 15, 2013 at 9:29 am

        He’s still a question mark. He might be an upgrade, but he might be a flop. Apparently management thinks that RIGHT NOW he’d be a flop. I’m sure management wants to see if those “excellent results” continue over a longer period before they deem him ready. Whether we think Gillies is ready is irrelevent; it’s the opinion of experienced scouts that matter.

      • Hogey's Role

        July 15, 2013 at 9:43 am

        I agree our opinions really don’t matter… however Gillies is 24 years old, we should either call him up now and see what he can do, or trade him to get a fill in center fielder until revere gets back… baseball careers only last so long, we can’t hold onto the kid in the minors until he’s finally ready, that might be when he’s 30… it’s worth a shot in my opinion, you don’t have to like it…

    • George

      July 15, 2013 at 10:01 am

      If talent evaluators think Gillies isn’t ready, I don’t think he should be tried at the ML level. Sometim3es those guys are wrong, but that’s not all that often. I also think if he’s not considered ready, no other team would give a pack of baseball cards for him.

      My own suspicions are that in another year, he’ll wind up in a trade for another team’s slow developing player; a disappointment for a disappointment.

  6. DavidE

    July 14, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    There is a definite need to upgrade the pinch-hitters on this team. While, Kevin Frandsen has been very effective coming off the bench, Laynce Nix stopped hitting in May. WIth McDonald strictly a defensive specialist, there is a need to get someone else who can hit coming off the bench.

    • c. schreiber

      July 15, 2013 at 8:47 pm

      How about bringing Minimart back? He has played CF!! REALLY!!!

  7. DavidE

    July 14, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Mayberry has hit in some clutch situations this year. He got an important home run yesterday and the game winning hit today. I would stick with him and see what he does. He has come up big the last 2 days.

  8. Dr. Dave

    July 14, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    Rajai Davis would be an upgrade! Steals bases by the bunches! Could play RF when Revere returns.

    • devin

      July 15, 2013 at 4:16 am

      Rajai Davis is not an upgrade on Mayberry.

      .288 .335 .380 .716


      .249 .304 .437 .740

      Davis gets on base a LITTLE more. Mayberry hits for ridiculously more power. Davis is a great base stealer. Stealing bases doesn’t win baseball games.

      What insane logic makes you think that stealing second is more valuable than just hitting a double in the first place?

      • Lefty

        July 15, 2013 at 6:37 am

        If Rajai Davis is not an upgrade on Mayberry, why is Ben Revere so considered so valuable?

        Ben’s OPS is .691, or less than the both guys you mentioned. Why isn’t it insane logic to have Ben Revere as your starting center fielder in the first place, based on your theory?

      • hk

        July 15, 2013 at 7:07 am


        Because the Ben Revere that we saw in June and July (OPS of .820 generated in large part from a BABIP of .400) is the one that is fresh in people’s minds. Since Ben was unlikely to continue producing at such a rate – his career OPS is .654 – I would assume that Mayberry or Davis can replace what anyone should have reasonably expected from Ben over the next 6 to 8 weeks, so I would hate to see them give up anything of value to acquire Davis.

      • George

        July 15, 2013 at 9:48 am

        Lefty, Revere is a lot younger than Davis and will likely get better (he was already showing improvement before breaking his foot). He stands a better chance of being being a real force than guys already approaching the downsides of their careers.

      • Lefty

        July 15, 2013 at 11:13 am

        George, I think the chances of Revere playing better than he has the last month or so is impossible, regardless of age. The guy really gives his all to the game and the team- and I really appreciate that. I don’t think most people understand, despite my opinions on his ability ceiling, I do like the guy.

        But I have to agree with hk, the facts are pretty convincing that what he’s been doing lately is unsustainable.

        My question to Devin was more about this-
        If he considers Mayberry to be so much of an upgrade over Rajai which is what he is arguing, then why would Mayberry not also be an upgrade to Revere? If Revere and Davis appear on paper to be the same player, regardless of age, then why isn’t Mayberry the starting Center-fielder. To me it’s simple, it’s because Mayberry is not the better everyday player.

      • George

        July 15, 2013 at 1:09 pm

        I think only a complete fool would think that Revere could sustain what he’s done in the past couple months. However, he hit .294 lat season, so his play is not a complete fluke. I’d guess his ceiling is somewhere near that, possibly a little higher, and that kind of performance should warrant being a regular.

        He will probably continue to develop his ability to track flyballs and his decision making on stealing bases, so he is a better option than Davis or Mayberry, who have likely learned all they ever will. And, as you said, not only is Mayberry not a better everyday player. In fact, he is not even an adequate everyday player. His defense is only average, and he can’t hit righties, and he’s already been tried as a regular and found guilty of being a part-timer.

      • devin

        July 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm

        “My question to Devin was more about this- If he considers Mayberry to be so much of an upgrade over Rajai which is what he is arguing, then why would Mayberry not also be an upgrade to Revere? If Revere and Davis appear on paper to be the same player, regardless of age, then why isn’t Mayberry the starting Center-fielder. To me it’s simple, it’s because Mayberry is not the better everyday player. ”

        Definitely keep putting words in my mouth, that will make for a rational and intelligent discussion.

        I don’t think Mayberry is an upgrade to Davis. I think that Davis is NOT an upgrade to Mayberry. Davis is a slightly better baseball player, but not nearly enough to justify giving up ANYTHING for him.

        The difference, to me, between Revere and Mayberry (which is more words you put in my mouth, as my post never even mentioned Revere) is that Revere is young enough to improve. Mayberry (and Davis) are the baseball players that they are going to be already, and neither of those baseball players is valuable.

  9. Jimmy PopUp

    July 14, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    Anyone see the irony here? The Phillies don’t have any prospects to call up from their pathetic farm system to fill in at CF and middle relief, but the are going to pry valuable players from other teams with their gold mine of talent?

    • EricL

      July 15, 2013 at 1:17 am

      Yes, like rain on your wedding day. Or a free ride when you’ve already paid. The good advice that you just didn’t take.

    • George

      July 15, 2013 at 9:37 am

      Teams don’t trade from weaknesses, they trade strengths to fill those weak spots. Just because they have little in center or in relief doesn’t mean they’re completely bereft of talent. The Phils have catching depth, two 3rd base prospects, and probably others that another team would be interested in, and they could afford to trade.

  10. bacardipr

    July 15, 2013 at 1:15 am

    They still have a few pieces. Biddle, Franco, Asche, Hernandez, E Martin. Couple of low level guys like Quinn. They have a logjam of LH relievers.

  11. wbramh

    July 15, 2013 at 4:38 am

    This will mean nothing to most of you here but this year’s team reminds me a lot of the 1957 Phils. That team had a bunch of aging veteran stars and a few young guys who showed promise but never really panned out. Arguably, they held on to their Whiz Kids stars too long while getting little return out of their farm system until the early 1960s.

    Solly, Granny and Puddin’ Head were all past their prime as were Seminick and Lopata. Even so, the aging Lopata and Hamner were the 2nd and 3rd highest RBI men on the team with 67 & 63 RBIs respectively while Eddie Bouchee led the team with just 76 RBIs. Harry “The Horse” Anderson never quite lived up to his beautiful swing after that year while the young Chico Fernandez and Bouchee also enjoyed their best years as Phillies and also went downhill from there, Simmons and Sanford were still under 30 and had a few more good years elsewhere (as did Whitey) but Robbie was just about cooked losing 22 games that year and Haddix would save his best stuff for one spectacular game as a Pirate.
    n the end, even with vestiges of past talent and a tiny smattering of promising youth, the team ended up right on .500 at the end of the year. From there it went all downhill for the Phils who suffered through the next 6 seasons in or near the cellar.

    Let’s hope the comparisons are not too similar.

    • EricL

      July 15, 2013 at 9:20 am

      Wow, the 1957 Phils? That’s before my mother was born.

    • loupossehl

      July 15, 2013 at 9:31 pm

      If only Swish Nicholson were available …

      By the way, Nicholson was one of the few players in MLB history to be intentionally walked with the bases loaded.

      As someone who relates all the way back to the Whiz Kids as you do – who the heck is “Solly”?

      I seem to dimly recollect someone acquired from the Reds … is he the guy?

  12. Dylan

    July 15, 2013 at 9:48 am

    Hunter Pence in RF would upgrade the of in general

    • George

      July 15, 2013 at 10:10 am

      He’d be better than Young, but that’s not going to help in center. Mayberry is still only okay, and that’s only okay vs. lefties.

      A better plan would be to find a guy who can play CF now, then move to RF when Revere returns. Pence can’t do that, and he’d also be a very expensive rental.

      • G7

        July 15, 2013 at 11:21 am

        Would be good to have a solid CF, then you could move Revere to LF and Brown to RF..

  13. Hogey's Role

    July 15, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    Are there any center fielders available, or going to be available at the deadline that might fill our void?

  14. J

    July 15, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    Did Scotty Pods sign anywhere this year, or has he retired?

    Grady Sizemore was supposed to be “resuming baseball activities” last month, I think. Anyone else on the scrap heap for cheap for a few weeks?

    • George

      July 16, 2013 at 2:33 pm

      Given his injury history, Grady Sizemore might not last long enough to play all the games needed before Revere gets well.

      I don’t think Pods would be an upgrade.

  15. Bob in Bucks

    July 15, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    Amaro unlikely to upgrade over Mayberry without giving up too much. Mayberry brings power not speed but they are both needed.

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