Phillies Spring: Mayberry Jr. too impressive?

21 03 2009

by Michael DeLucalarge_jmayberry

OF John Mayberry Jr. was acquired from the Texas Rangers in a trade last November for OF prospect Greg Golson. The move was made in order to give the Phils some pop from the right side of the plate. Now, Mayberry has impressed the staff so much this spring that he may have forced himself out of that job! Mayberry Jr. has shown power to all fields and, in 53 at bats, is currently hitting .264 with 3 home runs and 2 stolen bases.

“Mayberry is incredibly athletic and very physical,” says Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. “To watch him do some things, he’s made some adjustments with his swing and I think he’s taken to it very well. He’s a good kid. He’s a coachable kid. He’s been a pleasure to have in camp. He’s a pretty interesting player.”

The interesting part is that Mayberry, at one point one of baseball’s top prospects, is still just 25 years old and was selected in the first round of Major League Baseball’s annual draft…not once, but twice! In 2002, the Seattle Mariners drafted him, but he did not sign choosing to attended Stanford University. The Texas Rangers then drafted him 19th overall in the first round of the ’05 draft. He has been considered a bust to this point, playing four minor league seasons, hitting .255 with 82 homers and 257 RBIs.

The Phils, however, are starting to see the potential that made Mayberry Jr. a top 25 prospect. Unfortunately for him, that probably means a trip back to the minors since it seems the team may now prefer that he play every day and develop that talent at Class AAA Lehigh Valley instead of riding the pine with the big club.

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