On a team composed of veterans quickly approaching or comfortably nestled into their 30s, Domonic Brown provided a jolt of youth after his call-up in late July. Unfortunately, due to inconsistent playing time and sparse use off the bench, Dom didn’t contribute much at the Major League level.
But, seeing as this is a Year in Review for a player who will still be considered a rookie in 2011, it’s only fair that we take his whole season into account, and boy, what a season it was!
Entering spring training as one of the best prospects in baseball – in a field that still included the likes of Jason Heyward, Buster Posey, Mike Stanton, Logan Morrison and Stephen Strasburg, among others – was an excellent start. Buoyed by a strong .318/.391/.602 line at Double-A Reading and the promotions of those ranked above him, Brown quickly found his way to the peak of some midseason prospect lists. All he did for an encore, then, was hit .346/.390/.561 in 28 games for the IronPigs in Triple-A, making him an easy choice for promotion when Shane Victorino hit the DL back on July 28.
Dom’s .210/.257/.355 line in his 70 Major League PAs seems out character, considering his minor league success. He struck out frequently – 24 times in those 70 PA – and is still considered a “work in progress” for 2011. Hey, that’s fine. He’s just 22, has tools and talent that are lauded across the scouting spectrum and, in all likelihood, a seat in right field and the starting lineup that’s being kept warm for him. Those 70 PA aren’t nearly enough to be discouraging, as Brown still has loads of potential. Oh, and did I mention that he’s got a hose? Or, that while his defense is still a bit rough overall, he’s got some legitimate athleticism? I have now, anyway.
Someday, Domonic Brown will be a star for the Phillies. It could be as soon as 2011 or 2012, but there’s little denying the man’s future is bright enough to require Ray-Bans (waiting on the check). So what if 2010 wasn’t a rousing success in very limited time at the Major League level? Dom’s destruction of the Eastern and International Leagues, vaulting to the top tier of prospects and softening the blow of Jayson Werth‘s potential (and likely) departure are plenty enough to merit high marks.
PAUL’S GRADE: 8.9/10
PAT’S GRADE: 7.6/10 – It’s hard to say what his true grade should be. On one hand, he vaulted from Double-A to the majors quickly after tearing up minor league pitching. On the other hand, he didn’t do much once he got here, although he wasn’t given much of a chance because of the outfield logjam. The future is still bright.
NICK’S GRADE: 8/10 This is a year in review piece, and Brown destroyed minor league baseball. While his time with the Phillies was more or less a learning experience, you can’t not grade his season without including his time in the minors this year.