PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies said they didn't want to bring Domonic Brown to the big leagues until they were sure he was ready.
Funny how plans change when a team isn't scoring any runs.
Friday, the Phillies said they're not sure Brown is ready -- and they brought him to the big leagues, anyway. Manager Charlie Manuel said that the left-handed hitting Brown will play regularly against right-handed pitchers, and that he'll spot him against lefties.
Brown will play right field, with John Mayberry Jr. moving over to take the place of injured Shane Victorino in center field. Manuel said he hopes that Victorino will only miss the minimum two weeks on the disabled list, but the hope clearly is to keep Brown around for a lot longer than that.
This spring, the Phillies wanted Brown to compete for the starting outfield job left vacant when Jayson Werth went to Washington as a free agent. Brown pressed and struggled at the plate, then broke the hamate bone in his hand in the same at-bat that ended with his first hit.
Brown was not in the lineup Friday night against Rangers lefty C.J. Wilson, but Manuel plans to play him Saturday against right-hander Colby Lewis.
"I'm going to bring him along, just like I have a lot of young players," Manuel said.
Manuel clearly pushed for Brown's recall, hoping that he could help a team that has scored just 10 runs in the last six games. The Phillies are hitting .202 as a team over the last 13 games.
"There's still questions about whether he's ready," general manager Ruben Amaro said. "Circumstances changed, and I changed my mind. Is it the right thing to do? I'm not sure. But I think it's the right thing to do for this club."
Manuel argued that Brown was the Phillies' best option at this point. He also said that by playing Brown selectively, he can help get him established in the big leagues.
Sitting Brown against most left-handers is one way to do that. Manuel said he thinks some other young left-handed hitters were hurt by playing every day against lefties, right from the start, mentioning Hank Blalock with the Rangers and Jordan Schafer with the Braves as two examples.