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Nick Williams optioned to Triple-A as Scott Kingery returns


The Phillies are shipping Williams out to Triple-A Lehigh Valley in order to receive everyday playing time and regular at-bats. (Ian D’Andrea)

Prior to their Sunday series finale with the Colorado Rockies at Citizens Bank Park, the Philadelphia Phillies made an interesting roster move.

Scott Kingery, the club’s best bench player over the first few weeks of the season and their second baseman of the future, returns to the team this afternoon. Kingery has been out since straining his right hamstring back on April 19 against these same Rockies out at Coors Field.

“I am 100 percent,” Kingery said per Marc Narducci of Philly.com after last night’s rehab game in Reading. “I was looking to test (the hamstring) in every area of the game.”

Kingery hit just .143 over 15 plate appearances split between Low-A Lakewood and Double-A Reading. But more importantly he played the field at multiple positions and ran the bases with no issues.

In a corresponding move the club shipped outfielder Nick Williams out to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. This should prove to be a good move for both Williams as a player and the organization as a whole. Just 25-years-old, Williams needs to play everyday in order to be ready to help the Phillies as either a player should injuries strike or as trade bait.

So far this season, Williams has received just 61 plate appearances over the first two months. He is slashing just .180/.231/.262 with three extra-base hits. With veteran Andrew McCutchen and Bryce Harper manning the outfield corners on an everyday basis, Williams has made just 10 starts over the team’s first 45 games.

I think the important thing for him right now is to get a lot of reps,” Phillies assistant general manager Ned Rice said about Williams per Martin Frank at DelawareOnline.

He’s been in a tough spot all year, where we signed McCutchen, signed Harper. So a lot of the playing time we expected to give to him went away. We still have a lot of confidence in his talent. It’s just hard to get out of a slump when you’re getting one at-bat a night.

The Phillies have no pure outfielders now sitting on their bench at the big-league level. Kingery, Phil Gosselin, and Sean Rodriguez would be used in emergencies, as in-game substitutions and back-ups, or as spot starters.

 

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