Before the season, the Philadelphia Phillies were planning to go with John Mayberry, Jr. as their primary left fielder. Mayberry was also expected to fill in at first base with Ryan Howard expected to miss several months after tearing his Achilles tendon in the final playoff game last season.
Mayberry had enjoyed a solid rookie campaign with the Phillies in 2011, hitting .273/.341/.513 with 15 home runs and 49 RBIs in 296 plate appearances. He is off to a miserable start in 2012, with just a .217/.217/.261 statline, no home runs, and two RBIs in 46 plate appearances. He hasn’t walked yet and has 14 strikeouts. In fact, just one player in all of baseball (Nyjer Morgan) has more plate appearances without a walk than Mayberry. His power is down and he has an absurd amount of infield pop ups – a ridiculous 25.0 infield fly ball rate.
Mayberry can hit lefties well, but he can’t hit righties. After posting a .785 OPS against righties in 2011, Mayberry is down to just .250 in 16 plate appearances in 2012, with only two lone singles. Mayberry has all but lost his job in left field to Juan Pierre, and he’s not getting much playing time at first base either. Mayberry is the most disappointing player on the Phillies thus far, and the team is just 9-11 this season with him.
If Mayberry doesn’t start producing soon, the Phillies can’t afford to have him taking up a roster spot. The potential is there, but he just has to put it together.