Yesterday, the Phillies reunited with Marlon Byrd who was originally drafted by the team back in 1999. The right-handed hitting Byrd hit .291 with 24 home runs and 88 RBIs last season with the Mets and Pirates. The home run total was his career high, and he fell just one RBI short of his career high of 89 which he accomplished with the 2009 Rangers. He was signed to a two-year, $16 million deal and there's a vesting option for 2016.
There seems to be more question marks around this signing than certainty. What's known is that Byrd is expected to receive the majority of starts in right field and that he would be a defensive upgrade at that position. What's not known is whether or not Byrd can come anywhere close to the success he found in 2013. This also puts the status of Darin Ruf and John Mayberry, Jr. in doubt. While I believe it's time for Mayberry to move on, I'd like to see Ruf get an extended shot at being an everyday starter. Byrd's arrival means that Ruf will either fill a bench role or get his shot with another team.
The bulk of Byrd's Phillies baseball cards can be found in 2003 and 2004 releases, when his "hot prospect" status meant inclusion in just about every possible base and insert set. And one more Byrd thought - My wife Jenna and I were at the Phillies game on the night of May 14, 2005, when they flashed on the side score boards that Byrd had been traded to the Washington Nationals for Endy Chavez. So much has happened in the 8 1/2 years since that night.
John Lannan (10/17/13) - Outrighted off the 40-man roster and elected free agency.
Cesar Jimenez (10/24/13) - Outrighted off the 40-man roster and elected free agency.