Phillies Notes: Shake-up in left: Sandberg benches Brown

Leftfielder Domonic Brown (right) walks off the field
Leftfielder Domonic Brown (right) walks off the field (in the fourth inning to a chorus of boos after his misplay on a ball led to three Marlins runs.)
Posted: June 28, 2014

Ryne Sandberg knows he has some issues with his outfield. The Phillies manager is trying to address the one in left field right now.

Domonic Brown entered play Thursday with the lowest batting average (.217), slugging percentage (.322), and OPS (.593) among all leftfielders in baseball who have enough at-bats to qualify for a batting title.

Brown also had a spot on Sandberg's bench Thursday for the second time in three games after misjudging a fourth-inning fly ball that led to three Miami runs in a 3-2 loss Wednesday at Citizens Bank Park.

Sandberg said he had a long talk with the 26-year-old outfielder.

"I had a good conversation with him about making adjustments and then applying them . . . both on the offensive side and the defensive side," Sandberg said.

Sandberg said Brown has developed some poor mechanics at the plate.

"He's really developed an uppercut swing and he's just missing too many of his pitches, and it puts him in a hole in a lot of at-bats," the manager said.

"I don't know if you can teach all of the instincts [on defense], but you can teach game situationsĀ and anticipating balls, expecting balls to be hit to you on every pitch," Sandberg said. "That's a discipline, that's a focus. A little bit of that might be instincts, but the other part of that is just an all-out focus and discipline and practice."

What kind of reaction did Sandberg receive from Brown?

"I see somebody that wants to make a correction and understand it," Sandberg said. ". . . I do see a guy that realizes he has to make adjustments."

John Mayberry Jr. got the start in left field. He was 3 for 26 (.115) in his previous eight starts.

Brown pinch-hit for Mayberry in the seventh and singled, then scored the tying run to make it 3-3.

Help from the farm

Sandberg said that Lehigh Valley righthander Sean O'Sullivan will join the team and pitch the second game of Saturday night's doubleheader against David Hale and the Atlanta Braves.

O'Sullivan, 26, is 10-16 with a 5.89 ERA in 50 career big-league games with the Los Angeles Angels, Kansas City, and San Diego. He is 3-6 with a 4.31 ERA in 15 starts at Lehigh Valley this season.

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