Phillies Notes: Delmon Young still getting his chances with Phils

Delmon Young hitting a two-run double against the Nationals on June 17. He is batting just .222 in 158 plate appearances for the Phillies this season. YONG KIM / Staff Photographer
Delmon Young hitting a two-run double against the Nationals on June 17. He is batting just .222 in 158 plate appearances for the Phillies this season. YONG KIM / Staff Photographer
Posted: June 28, 2013

SAN DIEGO - Delmon Young spent his off day in court before the Phillies traveled west. He pleaded guilty last Thursday to a harassment violation, which erased an anti-Semitic incident in New York from his criminal record. He reached that deal through 10 hours of community service and sensitivity training.

Young was ordered to pay a $120 fee, a sum he can probably afford. The Phillies owe him at least $1.1 million in 2013, and that figure stands to increase so long as Young remains on the active roster and in Charlie Manuel's lineup.

The results have not yet materialized.

"He's going to get his swing back," Manuel said. "When, I don't know. But I think we still have to look at him."

The manager has said that for months. But maybe Wednesday was the start: Young had a double and a home run against the Padres.

Manuel admitted Young probably needed more time at the plate to sharpen his swing before he was activated April 30.

Young's .222 batting average, .278 on-base percentage, and .389 slugging percentage before Wednesday would all rank as career-worst numbers. Oftentimes, Manuel must use a bench player in the late innings as a defensive replacement (as he did Wednesday) or pinch-runner for Young.

"He has to get going," Manuel said. "I don't know if it's today or tomorrow or two weeks from now or a week or what. Hopefully, we can get him going."

The Phillies are not married to Young; they could cut ties at a small sunk cost. They are not yet willing to do that. Young can earn another $100,000 in mid-July when his 80th day on the roster passes. He will make another $150,000 when he eclipses 250 plate appearances. There are more bonuses beyond that.

Part of the problem is that no ideal replacement exists. John Mayberry Jr. has succeeded as the team's fourth outfielder but was exposed a season ago as not being an everyday man. Ruben Amaro Jr. recently said Darin Ruf is not someone who would help at the major-league level. Ruf has swung better in June, but his power output is well down.

The Phillies non-tendered Nate Schierholtz because they feared having a lineup that was too lefthanded. All Schierholtz has done is bat .300 for the Cubs with a .926 on-base-plus-slugging percentage, 11 homers, and 19 doubles. Chicago signed him for $2.25 million and can flip him in July for a prospect.

High futures

The Phillies will showcase their top two prospects in July's annual Futures Game at Citi Field. Jesse Biddle and Maikel Franco were named to the United States and World rosters, respectively, Wednesday. They are the lone representatives from the organization.

Biddle, the lefthander from Germantown Friends, has a 3.29 ERA in 14 starts at double-A Reading. Constantly under a microscope because of his local ties, the 21-year-old pitcher has followed a linear progression through the minors. Opposing hitters are batting .189 against him, but he has walked 4.8 hitters per nine innings.

Franco, 20, shot up the prospect rankings with a fast start to 2013. He was promoted last week to double-A Reading and batted .524 in his first five games there. For the season, he is hitting .316 with 18 home runs and is regarded by scouts as an above-average third baseman.

The Futures Game will be played July 14, the Sunday before the all-star break, at Citi Field.

Extra bases

Domonic Brown is the eighth Phillie to reach 20 home runs before the end of June. At age 25, he is the youngest to ever do it. . . . Amaro said Mike Adams was still weighing whether to undergo surgery for three tears in his shoulder or to follow a conservative rehab approach.


Contact Matt Gelbat mgelb@phillynews.com. Follow @magelb on Twitter.

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