Phillies Might Bring Grady Sizemore Back in 2015
Over the weekend, MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reported that outfielder Grady Sizemore may be back in Phillies red for the 2015 season. The 32-year-old, oft-injured outfielder has performed well for the Phillies after struggling with the Boston Red Sox, with which he started the season.
As the Phillies don’t portend to be competitive in the near future, GM Ruben Amaro was asked if Sizemore can be part of the team’s rebuilding effort. He responded:
“Yeah, very possible,” Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said recently. “He’s played well enough to certainly be in consideration for 2015 and beyond. But again that’s one of those questions we’ll continue to assess. What we do with our outfield will be one of those questions, and he could very well be a part of it.”via Todd Zolecki
In 106 plate appearances, Sizemore has compiled a .340 weighted on-base average and as a result, has usurped some of the playing time in left field from the struggling Domonic Brown.
Sizemore, however, has also benefited from a .363 BABIP as a result of a career-high 26 percent line drive rate. With only 81 balls put in play as a Phillie, that can be waved off due to the small sample size. Among Phillies with at least 100 plate appearances, only Ben Revere has drawn walks at a lower rate, and Sizemore strikes out three times for every one walk. Sizemore’s true talent likely likes in the .300-.310 area in terms of wOBA, which is not the type of production you go out of your way to retain, particularly when it comes from an injury-prone player in his mid-30’s.
Sizemore has undergone seven different surgical procedures dating back to 2009, according to Baseball Prospectus:
- September 9, 2009: Left elbow
- September 16, 2009: Sports hernia
- June 4, 2010: Left knee
- July 21, 2011: Sports hernia
- October 3, 2011: Right knee
- March 1, 2012: Lower back
- September 15, 2012: Right knee
To Sizemore’s credit, he has stayed off of the operating table for nearly two years. On the other hand, the result of all of those surgical procedures is that he is a shadow of the player he used to be.
The Phillies’ outfield is crowded as is, with Marlon Byrd in right field, Revere in center, and Brown in left. If Byrd is traded via waivers over the next two weeks, or at some point in the off-season, the Phillies should plug their corner outfield hole with a young player already in their system, such as Aaron Altherr. Furthermore, Sizemore should not be taking any playing time away from Brown, as Brown is still just 26 years old and could be a crucial part of the team when the Phillies return to competitive form. Sizemore certainly will not be part of the new and improved Phillies two or three years from now.