Phillies broadcasters Tom McCarthy, Jamie Moyer, and Matt Stairs are broadcasting Friday night’s game between the Phillies and Braves from center field. Only a few minutes after McCarthy had finished the introduction to the game, he was involved in the game. Keep in mind that this is the first time in the history of Citizens Bank Park that the broadcast has been done anywhere but the booth behind the plate.
Starter Kyle Kendrick allowed the first two batters he faced to reach base, as B.J. Upton singled and Andrelton Simmons walked. Freddie Freeman promptly blasted a three-run home run to the left of center field, directly at the trio of broadcasters. McCarthy, with glove on hand, reached up and caught the home run. After some encouragement from the fans around him, McCarthy fired the ball back onto the field.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Astros and outfielder Michael Brantley are closing in on an agreement for a two-year contract in the $32 million range.
Brantley, 31, played a mostly full season last year for the first time since 2015. He hit .309/.364/.468 with 17 home runs, 76 RBI, 89 runs scored, and 12 stolen bases in 631 plate appearances. He made the AL All-Star squad for the third time in his career.
Brantley’s health, though, is why he had to settle for a two-year deal as opposed to a longer contract for a player of his caliber. He will take over in left field. In the event Brantley succumbs to injury woes, the Astros have top prospect Kyle Tucker waiting in the wings.
Update: According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, who also reports that the deal is in place, the Astros plan to rotate Brantley between left field, first base, and DH. That opens up some more playing time for Tucker.