By Chris Murray
The Chris Murray Report
Before Tuesday’s game against the San Francisco Giants, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said he would prefer a right-handed bat over a reliever if the Phillies were to make a move before the July 31st trade deadline.
Names like Houston Astros rightfielder Hunter Pence and New York Mets switch-hitting centerfielder Carlos Beltran have been mentioned numerous times in all the trade rumors.
But Phillies outfielder John Mayberry Jr. is trying to make his own case to be the right-handed bat the team needs in it’s quest to win the World Series. Throughout the month of July, Mayberry has been trying to make the argument that he should be that right-handed bat the team so desperately needs.
“I look at Mayberry and I think he’s coming into being a pretty good player and he could do somethings, but at the same time, we could still use some right-handed bats, ” Manuel said.
So far this month Mayberry is batting .313 with 14 runs batted in and three homeruns. He has a .340 on-base percentage and .667 slugging percentage. For the season, 19 of Mayberry’s 39 hits have been for extra-bases. But as goes through his daily routine, Mayberry said he tries not think too much about being that big righthanded stick in the Phillies lineup.
“I’ve just got to go out there and play, have good games, have good at-bats and hopefully at the end, they’ll consider me for that spot,” said Mayberry, who went 2-for-3 with a double and a home run in the Phillies 7-2 win over the San Francisco Giants. “It’s been a combination of adjustments and being in great spots to hit in. It seems like everytime I was looking around, I was hitting with two guys on or with the bases loader or whatever the case may have been. I was in the right spot at the right time.”
Since being sent back down to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, Mayberry said he is having better at-bats and has become more patient at the plate.
“I think I’m seeing the ball well right now,” Mayberry said. “I’m trying to be early and slow and being in a good position to hit consistently.”
With the trade deadline approaching, there is no doubt that Mayberry is naturally feeling a bit antsy about his future with the team. He said if it were up to him, he would like to stay with the team for a long time.
“It’s obviously in the back of your mind, but hopefully I’ll be able to stay here and be a contributing factor to us winning,” Mayberry said. “I’m definitely excited about being a Phillie long term and hopefully I’m in their plans as such.”