Brandon Phillips (4) Days Until Cincinnati Reds Report to Spring Training


In just four days Cincinnati Reds pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training, and we will begin to find out if this year’s team can be better than the 2014 version, which was racked by injuries and poor offense.  One of the players whom the Reds need to bounce back is second baseman Brandon Phillips

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Last July, the Reds were one of the hottest teams in baseball heading into the All-Star game and looked poise to make a run for the National League Central title, or at least a Wild Card slot.  Just before the break, though, Phillips tore a ligament in his thumb to become the latest Red to succumb to injury, and it seemed to be the tipping point from which the Reds could not recover.

Although already diminished from his peak years in 2009-11, Phillips still provides the Reds with a strong glove up the middle and offensive pop from a position that often lacks in that department.

Since coming to the Reds from the Cleveland Indians before the 2006 season, Phillips entered 2014 having smacked 160 home runs, and he poses a threat on the bases, stealing as many as 32, though his running numbers have been down in recent seasons.

Regardless of age and his occasional lapses into disruptiveness for the team, Phillips is, by necessity, part of Cincinnati’s plan for improving this year … and the next … and the next.  Specifically, the Reds owe Phillps $39 million between now and when he becomes a free agent in 2018.

That contract and the full no-trade rights bestowed upon him by virtue of his 10-and-5 veteran’s status should make him a fixture on the Riverfront.

If the Reds are going to make it back to the playoffs anytime soon, they’ll have to do it with Brandon Phillips.  Here’s hoping he’s healthy and productive.


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