It’s like a never-ending cycle with Domonic Brown. He shows flashes of greatness, the fans get excited, and then he goes back to performing below average. Brown was called up on June 16th to play as the club’s right fielder after spending some time in Triple-A. He is now 27 and it seems like years and years since scouts were fawning over Brown. As it has. Brown was drafted in the 20th round of the 2006 Amateur Draft right out of high school. He did well in the Philadelphia Phillies’ farm system, and fans were excited for his call-up in 2010.
In 2010, he played 35 games from August to September and played for the most part below average. But it was his first few months in the Majors and the Phillies were in the midst of their playoff push, so people gave him the benefit of the doubt. 2011 rolled around and Brown played in 56 games that were mediocre. Fans still believed that the highly regarded prospect could surely do better. They would be disappointed in 2012 when his baseball skills declined further. In 2013, many fans were ready to give up on Brown, but Amaro and company weren’t ready just yet. Brown showed signs of greatness in the months of May and June where he hit home run after home run and played well enough to earn himself an all-star bid.
From that point on, Brown has played the worst baseball of his baseball career. In 2014, he had his worst season on record. Fans at this point definitely were ready to call it quits on Brown. Fast forward to the present, and I absolutely agree. Five years is more than enough time to separate the boys from the men. If the front office can finally agree that it is time to part ways with Brown, the Phils have a couple of options.
The first option is to just wait out the season. Brown currently has a one year contract with the team for $2.3 million. Compared to the big bucks the Phillies are spending on Ryan Howard, Jonathan Papelbon, etc., a couple million dollars is practically meaningless to them.
Another less likely option that is worth considering is a trade. Expiring contracts are easier to trade, but Dom Brown’s would be a tough one to pull off. There are a few teams that could possibly take him if they are desperate and down on their luck. For example, a Marlins team without Stanton or possibly the White Sox if they want to give up on their current right fielder, Avisail Garcia.
To get a trade done, the Phils could sell the point that all Brown might need is a change of scenery. After all, it worked for current Orioles first baseman Chris Davis who was in a similar situation as Brown, but to a lesser degree. Davis was expected to do big things for the Texas Rangers but performed below average. When he was traded to Baltimore, something clicked for Davis and next thing you know, he became an all-star and was leading the Majors in home runs and RBIs. In return, the Phillies could get another player that could also just need a change of scenery.
In reality, that is all just wishful thinking. Dom Brown is a good candidate for the worst outfielder in baseball. So he wouldn’t be an upgrade to any team, shutting down all trading possibilities. The best thing the Phillies could do is release Brown, cut their losses, and move forward.