Found August 16, 2012 on Philly Sports World:

Pierre deserves another year in Philly

The Philadelphia Phillies will be in the market to fill a bunch of holes in their lineup next year. With a team that has already committed a ton of money to a few players next year, staying under the luxury tax could prove to be tricky. But there could be a few options right under their noses that could give the Phillies some cheap options to fill at least a few of those roster spots.

I realize that the sample size is a bit small still, but given the lack of options at third base via free agency, it might make sense to give Kevin Fransden a look there. Outside of an aging Kevin Youkilis, who might just be a repeat of the Placido Polanco signing, there are almost no options on the market. Fransden has at least provided solid defense, and again while the sample size is small, he’s been decent at the plate. Charlie Manuel has already conceded that Polanco will not be the starting third baseman for the Phillies when he returns to the team later in the week. Fransden has at least given you what Polanco has, and in the absence of any viable options, maybe he could provide you a low cost patch on the position until something better comes along.

Eric Kratz has been a spectacular fill in for the injured Carlos Ruiz. As well as Brian Schneider has done behind the plate over the past couple of years, he hasn’t been all that productive at it. Kratz has at least shown some pop in his bat and has been very solid defensively. He could provide the Phillies with a reasonably priced back up catcher and even at 32, a younger option behind the plate than Schneider.

I hear a lot of people talking about Juan Pierre not being a part of the Phillies future because of his lack of power. Sure he hits a home run once every 3 years, and I understand that he can be a bit of a defensive liability, but no more so than Raul Ibanez was in his 3 years with the team. I know he doesn’t give you the kind of power that you’d like in a corner outfielder, but at the same time, he’s been one of the best hitters the Phillies have had all year. He gives you speed on the base path and gets on. That’s why he came here and he’s done his job. If Domonic Brown can step up and steal a starting job in the outfield, and provide some decent power, then maybe the Phillies could absorb Pierre’s lack of power.

In the end, the Phillies would then be able to focus all of their attention and resources on getting another outfielder who could provide the kind of power you need. The rest of the money could be spent on a real bullpen, unlike the Mickey Mouse club that was marched out there this year and authored one of the Summer of our discontent.

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