Domonic Brown is playing well enough in spring training to earn the starting left field position for the Philadelphia Phillies when the season starts. Yes, I know that it’s only been six games (including the Atlanta Braves game currently on), but his presence at the plate should not be overlooked so quickly.
The Phillies have a wealth of low impact outfield talent to start 2013. With Delmon Young injured to start the season, the Phillies are left with two of the following players: Domonic Brown, Darin Ruf, John Mayberry Jr., Laynce Nix, or the long shot Ender Incarnate.
Of those four, I think Brown and Mayberry are the most likely to start the season. The Phillies have been waiting for Brown to develop for three seasons now, so the Phils will use any bright spot in his game during spring training as justification for him to start, and his current .416 average (5-12) with 2 HR in six games is a good enough start to give him the early lead. I think the other choice is John Mayberry (who hit a home run today), simply because he will not be the defensive liability that Darin Ruf is.
Ruf is certainly one of the fan favorites, but his defensive woes to start spring training are not encouraging. He is a natural first baseman, but is obviously blocked by the $25 million dollar man Ryan Howard. In desperate need of offensive production the Phillies shifted him to outfield to add a bit of pop to their outfield competition. In today’s game vs the Braves he looked lost more than once fielding balls, and may be a bit of a project in the outfield.
I’m not overreacting. Yes, I know it is still VERY early in spring training. These are just predictions based on what I’ve seen so far.