Mickey Moniak could be back soon for Phillies

·2 min read

With sinkhole in CF, Phillies appear to be being aggressive with Mickey Moniak originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

In terms of offense, center field has been a sinkhole for the Phillies this season.

Phillies center fielders entered Saturday ranked 27th in the majors in batting average (.192), 29th in on-base percentage (.239) and 24th in slugging (.308).

Odubel Herrera and Roman Quinn have gotten the recent work at the position. Herrera entered Saturday hitting .192 (9 for 47) with just one walk and 14 strikeouts in May. Quinn was hitting .120 (3 for 25) with no walks and eight strikeouts.

The path is wide open for Mickey Moniak to get a look at the position as soon as club officials believe he's had enough reps on minor-league injury rehab.

Moniak, who suffered a broken right hand on the final day of spring training, began a rehab stint with Class A Clearwater on Friday night (he doubled and tripled) and was back in the lineup Saturday.

It's noteworthy that Moniak was right back on the field 24 hours after his first rehab game because teams often ease players back into action, a day on, a day off, for the first few days with a slow build-up of innings.

The Phillies seem to be being aggressive with Moniak.

"From a physical standpoint, he's in pretty good shape," manager Joe Girardi said Saturday afternoon. "He played seven innings (Friday). Guys don't do that on (the first day of) rehab. I don't think he needs to build his body up as much as some guys when they go on rehab. They go five (innings) and they have a day off. I don't think Mickey needs to do that as much because he was all over the place (doing work) when he was here (while on the injured list for the first month of the season)."

Position players are allowed 20 days of minor-league rehab. Moniak would even have more time than that if the Phillies desired because he can be optioned to Triple A.

Girardi was presented with the thought that the Phillies' need for production in center field could lead to a quick return for Moniak.

He did not shoot it down.

"Yeah," Girardi said. "I think we'll take a look at him and if we feel he's ready ..."

So Moniak could push the Phillies' hand for a quick recall?

"Yeah," Girardi said.

Moniak went 1 for 4 with an RBI and a strikeout in Clearwater's 5-4 win over Fort Myers on Saturday. He will move to Double A Reading on Tuesday as he continues to work his way back to Philadelphia.

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