The Phillies reportedly added to their depth Monday night, signing veteran third baseman Trevor Plouffe to a minor-league contract.
Plouffe was in spring training with the Rangers this year but failed to make the roster. He then asked for his release, which they gave him.
There doesn’t appear to be a spot for Plouffe to fill on the major-league roster. Maikel Franco has cooled down a bit but still has a .241 average and .706 OPS with 17 runs batted in through 17 games this year. Scott Kingery has been the primary player off the bench along with Pedro Florimon. There really isn’t a hole for Plouffe to fill.
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Plouffe is coming off the worst season of his career. In 100 games between Oakland and Tampa Bay, he had a .198/.272/.318 line with nine home runs and 19 RBI. He posted a 28.1 percent strikeout rate, the highest of any season since his rookie year. Plouffe was worth -1.2 wins above replacement according to Fangraphs.
As a whole, Plouffe has been an okay player during his career.
In 823 games over eight seasons, Plouffe has a .242/.304/.410 line with a 95 OPS+, 105 home runs, and 376 runs batted in. He has played over 600 games at third base, sporting a .957 fielding percentage.
Plouffe also has 57 career games at shortstop, 47 at first base, 30 in the corner outfield positions, and 26 at second base. He isn’t a spectacular defender, but if he ever comes up to the majors, that bit of versatility could prove to be useful.
Plouffe will likely be in Triple-A Lehigh Valley for the meantime. Mitch Walding has been the squad’s everyday third baseman this year. He has been off to a solid start this season, hitting .268 with a .834 OPS in 16 games. Plouffe may have to bide his time on the bench for the IronPigs.