Phillies Sign Grady Sizemore to a Minor League Deal
Via MLB.com‘s Todd Zolecki:
The Phillies have signed OF Grady Sizemore to a minor league contract. He will report to Lehigh Valley (AAA) on Thursday.
— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) June 24, 2014
Grady Sizemore, 31, had a poor showing with the Boston Red Sox leading up to his release last Wednesday. In 205 plate appearances, Sizemore slashed .216/.288/.324 with two home runs and five stolen bases. Prior to his start on March 31, Sizemore hadn’t played in the big leagues since September 22, 2011. Once a perennial All-Star and MVP candidate with the Cleveland Indians, Sizemore constantly battled injuries, going under the knife a staggering seven times between 2009-12, according to Baseball Prospectus.
The Phillies, however, could use a left-handed bat off the bench. Tony Gwynn, Jr. hasn’t gotten the job done as he has posted a .447 OPS in 101 PA. With Reid Brignac on the disabled list, the switch-hitting Cesar Hernandez is the only other bench player who can hit from the left side. The Phillies hope Sizemore can go to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, catch his bearings, and come up quickly to contribute.
Sizemore can also play center field and both outfield corners, giving manager Ryne Sandberg to make a late game defensive substitution. As he stole five bases in as many attempts with the Red Sox and was once an elite base runner, Sizemore could also be used as a pinch-runner. Sizemore could also eventually bump center fielder Ben Revere and his .615 OPS, or Domonic Brown and his .596 OPS, out of some playing time.