Presented without explanation, our new feature: What Philly Is Overreacting To.
The graphic says it all. Domonic Brown sucks.
0 for 12? I had a streak like that—in little leauge, once. Well... 0 for 12 was probably normal actually. I think I was scared of the ball then. Dom Brown must be scared of the ball, too.
That's it! He's scared of the ball. It makes so much sense. How else do you explain the 21 consecutive recorded at bats dating all the way back to September 28 since Brown has registered a base hit in a Major League Baseball gamebook? Amazing he could make it to the show with such a glaring hole in his game.
Or, it's spring training, and the young man is working on his swing. What statistics can you recite, let alone find, from prior seasons' exhibition games? Any? C'mon, that time you were in Clearwater and Ryan Howard went 3 for 4 with a couple of moonshots is pretty remote, and doesn't count.
Look, these are the only relevant numbers so far.
73 plate appearances. Between regular season and playoffs, Brown has officially stepped in the batter's box a total of 73 times. Now I don't watch as much SportsCenter as I used to, but I can't remember the last time they posted a graphic detailing the best players in history through their first 73 at bats.
To put 73 plate appearances in perspective, it ranked 17th on the Phillies in 2010, even behind pitchers Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels. Jayson Werth stood at the dish nearly 10 times that amount last season alone. Oh yeah, and Mr. Rock Star didn't hit his first career dinger until plate appearance number 70; Brown's already got two. Smoked.
Fourth on Baseball America's prospect list. This isn't just any kid Phillies fans are pinning their hopes and dreams on. Brown is legitimately one of the top young players in baseball. Just ask these people.
Obviously, Dom is on there for a reason. Maybe it's because he has excelled and then some at every level in the minor leagues, culminating with his participation in last year's All-Star Futures game. Maybe it's because he's a five-tool outfielder with so much raw athletic ability, he honestly could have played wide receiver for the Miami Hurricanes.
Regardless, Brown worked his way up that list. It's not a draft board, nor an entirely inconsequential rating. People in the know believe he's gonna be good.
Ben Francisco. That's not a number, you say? It's not always about Domonic Brown, ya know.
Because while Dom hacks away and learns the tools of the trade, Francisco is having the best spring of any Phillies hitter so far. If these games have anything to do with who will be in right field come April 1, there is no debate his .308 batting average and club-high five RBI's make Benny Fresh the early leader.
Ben Francisco can start in right field on Opening Day, and that's okay. It would arguably say more about the way he's getting it done at the plate.
Domonic Brown will play a major role on the Phillies in 2011 though, and likely beyond. He has outrageous physical talent, but he's only 23-years-old. Obviously he has a few things to work on, but there is plenty of baseball ahead. Talk to me when the struggles last into the summer.