I hope you’re happy, Phillies fans.
While the Phillies were able to acquire All-Star outfielder Hunter Pence from the Astros last night, we’ll still have to be subjected to Raul Ibanez in left field on a regular basis. According to Jon Heyman of SI.com, the Phillies plan to send Domonic Brown down to the minors so that he can play everyday, presumably until the rosters expand in September.
The Phillies will likely need to make two roster moves today, with Pence coming over from the Astros expected Placido Polanco to return from the disabled list. On the positive side of things, at least the Phillies didn’t cave completely and give up Brown as part of the Pence trade. They paid a heavy price to get a deal done with the Astros, but including Brown would have been utter madness.
Brown, 23, is batting .246/.335/.393 with five home runs, 19 RBI and three stolen bases over 204 plate appearances this season. The rookie outfielder is hitting .296 (21-for-71) with a .398 on-base percentage this month.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.