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Phillies Sign Delmon Young to One-Year Deal

The Philadelphia Phillies have announced that they have signed former 2012 ALCS MVP Delmon Young to a one-year, $750,000 contract with performance bonuses that could make the contract worth up to $3.5 million. The 27 year-old outfielder batted .267 with 27 doubles, 18 HRs, and 72 RBIs for the Detroit Tigers last season. During the Tigers’ postseason run (13 games), Young batted .313 with three HRs and a team-high 9 RBIs, more than Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera.

Despite playing well on the field, it was the off the field issues that cost Young a long-term deal by any MLB team. Last spring, Young was suspended for seven days after an incident outside a hotel. Young later pleaded guilty to harassment  shouting a anti-Semitic slur, and tackling a man to the ground.

Young with the Tigers (via Getty Images).

The Phillies main needs are outfield help and power from the right side of the plate, and Young brings both to the table and at a very small cost. Young could be batting 5th in the order, between Ryan Howard and Chase Utley.

The Phillies acquired former Minnesota Twins outfielder Ben Revere to be their starting center fielder, but Phil’s GM Ruben Amaro Jr. wasn’t sure about the corners. Amaro expects Young to be the Phillies’ starting right fielder, a position that he hasn’t played since 2007. Young also admitted to having micro fracture surgery on his right ankle in November, so he may not be 100% by the start of Spring Training.

The other outfield candidates are Darin Ruf, John Mayberry Jr., Dominic Brown, and Laynce Nix. Ruf hit 38 HRs in AA-Reading last year, Brown was considered to be the Phillies’ top prospect, while Mayberry and Nix, who were both expected to compete for the job in left field last year, have some decent major league time. If Young ends up starting in right, Ruf and Brown, who are easily the top-dogs in this fight, could platoon in left while Mayberry and Nix could see opportunities off the bench.

Young started 29 games in left field for Detroit, while mainly serving as DH. He has 156 career starts in left field, 127 of them coming while he was playing for Tampa Bay in 2007.

During the Phillies’ 5 years of prominence that led to 5 straight NL East titles, their outfield was considered one of the best. From 2007-2011, they had five All-Star outfielders in Aaron Rowand, Shane Victorino, Hunter Pence, Raul Ibañez, and Jayson Werth. They also had slugger Pat Burrell who, while never an All-Star, averaged 32 HRs and 108 RBIs in 2007-08.

Pence and Victorino were traded at the trade deadline last year, leaving two major holes for the Phillies to fill up. Revere and Young could fill those holes at a fraction of the price. Pence is earning $13.8 million with San Francisco and Victorino just locked up a new deal in Boston for three years and $39 million.

Young’s best season was in 2010 with the Twins, when he hit .298, 21 HRs, and 112 RBIs and finished 10th in AL MVP voting. Young is a career .284 hitter with 89 HRs and 482 RBIs.

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Categories: Beat Writing, Phillies

Author:Curran Aiyer

Studying Finance, Business Analytics, and International Business at the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University with a minor in Spanish. Aspiring to change the world by driving education and the importance of staying informed. Looking to share my learnings and knowledge on behavioral economics and how that correlates with investing in yourself wisely. Originally from Philadelphia and trusting the process.

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