If you haven’t noticed Dom Brown is killing it in Spring Training. Killing it to the tune of six home-runs this spring, while hitting .397. The Dom Brown we all thought that we were getting when he got called up for an injured Jayson Werth in 2010, has arrived. And Dom Brown is the type of player that the Phillies have lacked for a long time, even when they were winning and going to World Series. And no I’m not just basing that assessment off of spring training, I’m taking the progression that he has show so far, and adding on to some of the good Dom Brown already provided.
Before discussing the good that Dom Brown appears to have developed over the off-season let’s remind ourselves some of the good that Dom already displayed at the MLB level. First off he has a cannon of an arm, and as it appears he has a chance to settle into right-field this year, that arm should be on full display. His issue has never been the arm, it has been his ability to judge balls in the outfield. So far watching Brown in Clearwater he looks way more comfortable and is judging both fly balls and line drives better than he did at either Lehigh Valley or Philly last season. Secondly he had amazing plate discipline, and that is something that the Phillies have lacked for so many seasons. Seriously how many Phillies fans can say that they haven’t complained about Jimmy Rollins or Shane Victorino coming up in a big spot, and popping the first pitch up to the second baseman? Yeah me either. So the Phillies finally get someone with plate discipline, and we are going to complain about it? Doesn’t make a ton of sense to me at least. I understand that Brown was not a consistent hitter, but he really was never as bad as people made it seem. While Brown finished 2012 with an average of .235, he spent much of the year hitting over .250 and faded late. Either way I understand that his hitting was sub-par for our original expectations, but remember he was patient, and the Phillies have long needed that in this lineup.
So what exactly is my point? My point is that Dom Brown had a cannon arm and great plate discipline, and if Spring Training is any indication he appears to have turned the corner not only at the plate where he has made some minor but beneficial adjustments to both his stance and swing, but also in the field. So what makes Dom Brown perfect for the Phillies? The fact that not only is he going to be productive, but he has patience, so he will work walks and not strikeout a ton. And the Phillies have lacked that type of player for quite a few years now. Just remember where you heard it first, Dom Brown is going to have a big year, and Tim Kelly of Section 215 called it first.