It’s well known that Domonic Brown’s value to the Phillies, either as a potential contributor or as a trade piece, has greatly diminished over the last two years. So much so the Phils are apparently ready to trade him for a bag of baseballs and a warm turkey sandwich.
CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman today tweeted that the Phils have considered moving Brown in exchange for Chicago Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) December 11, 2012
First, a full disclosure. I am not one of the Dom Brown apologists. While I agree that he has not been treated well by the organization and that the Phils front office has jerked him around to the point of frustration, it is important to note than in parts of three seasons, Brown has yet to produce anything close to what was expected of him, and much of that is on him.
Dom Brown get cut way too much slack in some circles, and at some point, he’s going to have to produce.
He’s been disappointing so far. There’s just no other way to put it.
And Brown certainly should not be considered an untouchable piece anymore. Those days are long gone. The Phils should have no compunction about moving Domonic Brown should the right move come along.
I stress THE RIGHT MOVE.
Alfonso Soriano is not the right move. It makes no sense.
Soriano is a left fielder. The Phillies already have left fielders in Brown and Ruf. They need someone who can play right field. Soriano can barely manage to defend his current position (despite protestations from Heyman that Soriano’s defense was “greatly improved) let alone slide over to a different side of the diamond.
Soriano is 36 years old, and although he had a decent offensive season last year (32 HRs, 106 RBIs, .262 batting average) and is a much-needed right-handed bat, trading a 25-year-old kid with a ton of promise for an aging veteran owed $36 million over the next two years is a fireable offense.
If Ruben Amaro trades Domonic Brown for Alfonso Soriano, he should be fired on the spot.
Not because Brown is definitely going to become some superstar. It’s more likely Brown is going to be the next Jeff Stone as opposed to the next Darryl Strawberry.
But trading any young player with potential for an aging, one dimensional former star who is unlikely to duplicate the numbers he recorded in 2012, would be a monumentally moronic decision.
Even if Chicago agreed to pick up all but about $10 million of Soriano’s contract, as Heyman reported, it still would be indefensible.
Thankfully, it doesn’t appear as if this is a serious rumor, and Heyman notes the Phils are more likely to go after a free agent outfielder like Cody Ross, Nick Swisher or even Josh Hamilton.
What IS clear is that between this rumor, Charlie Manuel’s comments last week about Brown, and the teams’s handling of Dom in recent years, the Phillies are down on him.
A split seems inevitable, and it might just be the best thing for both parties.
But the Phillies should not just give him away.
And that’s exactly what trading him for Alfonso Soriano would be doing.