I was reading the ESPN chat with Eric Karabell on Thursday morning and came across this question about Domonic Brown:
Does Dominic Brown get a call up and what are your projections on that call up? Also, is he worth saving as a rookie keeper?
Eric Karabell(3:04 PM)
I think he gets called up in September. There's no room for him to play these days. I mean, I think Brown could outperform Raul Ibanez, but then again, Ibanez is currently batting third for the Phillies and has another year on his contract. He's not going to be sat. Victorino and Werth are productive. Brown can't play second base. So I don't see him offering fantasy owners much this season. Next season, when he's starting in RF and Werth is making $90 mil for the Yankees... Brown is probably a top 30 outfielder right away, so keep him.
Is that the Phillies fan in Karabell saying that? Or does he own him in a keeper league (like I do)? Not sure, but let's take a look at how Brown is doing in the minors this season.
In 236 at bats in AA, Brown went 15-47-12 with a .318-.391-.602 triple slash line, with a 51-29 K/BB rate. At AAA Lehigh Valley, he has gone 4-12-2 with a .392-.418-.696 triple slash line and has struck out 10 times and walked 3 times. So for the season, he has hit .331-.396-.617 with 19 HRs, 59 RBIs and 14 SBs.
There have been recent rumors that the Phillies may deal outfielder Jayson Werthshould they fall out of the race in the next few weeks. Currently, the Phillies are 6 games out of first, sitting in 3rd place behind the Mets and Braves, so I would not put it past GM Ruben Amaro to deal Werth. Or, Amaro could deal centerfielderShane Victorino for pitching help, bring up Brown to play right field, and move Werth to center. Amaro really likes Brown, and I think he wants to make a deal to bring him up.
But, is Brown a Top 30 outfielder right out of the gate? Looking at the top 30 outfielders on CBS Sports fantasy site, the bottom 5 in the top 30 outfielders includes Adam Dunn, Josh Willingham, Michael Bourn, David Dejesus, and Vernon Wells.
I am not sure I would take Brown over any of those guys, but it would not surprise me to see Brown go 20-15 in his first season. Too optimistic?