In early June, the Philadelphia Phillies announced that Andrew McCutchen suffered a season-ending ACL tear in a rundown. Through 59 games this year, McCutchen was the everyday left fielder and leadoff batter. With an outstanding .990 fielding percentage and .256/.378/.457 at the lead off spot, McCutchen’s loss will be truly felt. He led the team with 45 runs. Although he began the year with a higher strikeout rate than usual, he has controlled the zone. He only recorded 55 strikeouts on the year as opposed to 43 walks.
According to a report by Sports Illustrated, an ACL injury of any kind is by far one of the lowest-likely injuries in the sport of baseball. In the 21st century, the highest reported rate of ACL injuries was 56 in both the 2009 and 2012 season. McCutchen was simply showcasing his great athleticism, when an unfortunate turn of events put him as a hopeful to be ready for Opening Day next year.
Making important, necessary moves
In coincidental news, general manager Matt Klentak was back on the acquisition train just days before, where he traded veteran outfielder Jay Bruce. He tapped into the plentiful source of the Seattle Mariners, who are in a midst of a major rebuild. The Phillies only gave away Minor League third baseman Jake Scheiner and cash considerations. The bizarre part of this trade was that the Mariners are covering more than $18.5 million of his $21.3 million dollar deal, leaving $2.75 million for the Phillies to pay. Deals like this where the Mariners bite a large chunk of the deal has been a theme of late. Just days ago, Seattle made a very similar deal with the New York Yankees giving away Edwin Encarnacion.
The Phillies will not complain, as his impact was seen as soon as he joined the team in San Diego. In his first three games in red and white, Bruce took the baseball world by storm. He hit 6-for-11 with two doubles, three home runs, seven RBI’s and only one strikeout. He is batting .308/.341/.744 since coming to the city of Brotherly Love with five homers and 13 RBI’s. Best of all, he puts the ball in play with consistency, as he only has three strikeouts through 40 at-bats.
The reason at the time for the Bruce trade was to fill the void of Odubel Herrera being placed on administration leave until July 1. The deal was intended to have a more reliable bat placed in the outfield than a Nick Williams in a corner outfield slot. Now that they lost both left and center just days after the deal, it was clear that another deal may be needed. That was until Scott Kingery proved himself as the possible savior for the club.
“King”ery of Philadelphia
The 25-year-old utility has had such a quiet but great year that I have mentioned in the past few articles. He is a home grown talent who has been so much better than expected. In only his second year in the pros, he has increased his average by 118 points, with a .344/.385/.664 line with eight home runs and 21 RBI’s. He has had a hot bat of late, and he will be a key reason why the Phillies front office can focus on pitching needs over anything for the offense. The offense is still a powerhouse in the National League and is the main reason for their first-half success.
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