Rather than keep him on a minor-league rehab assignment for his fractured hamate bone, the Phillies activated Domonic Brown from the disabled list yesterday and then optioned him to Triple-A.
That means he’ll continue to play in the minors, but will do so as a Triple-A player rather than a rehabbing big leaguer.
While perhaps not the most important distinction, the Phillies could have allowed him to rehab for another couple weeks and choosing to simply assign him to Triple-A instead stops him from accumulating MLB service time and suggests they aren’t planning to call him up to the majors any time soon.
Or as general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. told Todd Zolecki of MLB.com:
I’m not going to bring Domonic Brown up just to bring Domonic Brown. We’re going to bring Domonic Brown up when he’s ready to play in the big leagues and he’s ready to contribute.
Brown is among the elite prospects in baseball and absolutely destroyed Double-A and Triple-A pitching last season at age 22, but he struggled in sporadic action with the Phillies down the stretch and right now Ben Francisco is doing a solid job as the everyday right fielder
Craig Mish of SiriusXM reports that the Brewers have put together a trade offer for Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich. He describes the club’s interest in Yelich as “strong,” and notes that other teams remain in the mix.
Yelich’s relationship with the Marlins was recently described by his agent as “irretrievably broken” following the trades of Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, and Dee Gordon. His agent said Yelich “needs to get on with his career where he’s got a chance to win.” Understandably, teams have been calling the Marlins asking about him.
The 26-year-old hit .282/.369/.439 with 18 home runs, 81 RBI, 100 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 695 plate appearances last season. He’s in the fourth year of a seven-year, $49.57 million contract of which $44.5 million remains. Given how slow the free agent market has been this offseason, it’s difficult to say exactly what he would get if he were to hit the open market, but it is safe to say that his current contract is very much a bargain for his team, which only makes him even more attractive to inquiring teams.
The Brewers are an interesting team to get involved in the Yelich sweepstakes. Their outfield already has three capable players in Ryan Braun, Domingo Santana, and Keon Broxton. Yelich would still be an upgrade, but the Brewers’ resources may be better spent in other areas like the starting rotation.
Given Yelich’s displeasure and Jeter’s insistence on stripping the Marlins bare — including, potentially, the iconic home run sculpture — it wouldn’t be surprising at all to see a trade happen.