The Phillies announced a host of roster moves after Triple-A Lehigh Valley lost to the Columbus Clippers in the Governors’ Cup Finals last night. Among them, Domonic Brown has returned to the major league roster.
Brown is batting .246/.335/.393 with five home runs, 19 RBI, three stolen bases and a .728 OPS over 209 plate appearances with the Phillies this season. The 24-year-old outfielder was sent back to the minors in late-July following the acquisition of Hunter Pence. He batted just .227 with one home run over 97 at-bats with the IronPigs down the stretch and went 1-for-16 (.063) as the DH during the playoffs.
Despite the underwhelming results, Brown could still contend for a spot on the playoff roster depending upon whether the Phillies decide to go with 10 or 11 pitchers. Pete Orr and John Bowker are also likely on the bubble.
Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.
GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”
Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.
Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.
Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.
The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.