Todd Zolecki of MLB.com asked Charlie Manuel about his projected lineup and the Phillies manager uttered this quote regarding new right fielder Delmon Young possibly batting fifth:
Yeah, he can hit fifth. He definitely can hit fifth. I think once we get to spring training and put him in and let him play, I think hitting is definitely his strong point. I think he’s a good hitter.
Basically all you need to know about Young’s career is that he has a .317 on-base percentage and .425 slugging percentage in 880 games and yet saying “hitting is definitely his strong point” is undeniably true.
By the way, Young has batted fifth more often than any other lineup spot during his career, logging 1,352 plate appearances there. And he’s hit .267 with a .294 on-base percentage and .385 slugging percentage.
Jon Heyman has been hot on the free agent trail today, reporting that the Padres have made offers both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper. The offer to Machado is believed to be for eight years and about $250 million, while the offer to Harper is believed to be for more than that.
Heyman was reporting on Harper earlier, tweeting that the Phillies are the favorite to sign him. He added this evening that Harper has multiple long-term offers at more than $30 million annually. Regarding Machado, Heyman noted that while Machado was believed to have had a preference for the East coast, he will go for the best deal now, which puts the Padres firmly in the picture.
The Padres reportedly met with Machado last week. A late entrant into the sweepstakes, the club has shown the willingness to spend, signing Eric Hosmer to an eight-year, $144 million contract last year. If he goes to San Diego, Machado would be the full-time third baseman with Luis Urias handling shortstop.
Nothing appears close, but we’ll take anything resembling a spark to light the hot stove.