Phillies on Brad Hawpe: “Maybe”

Posted by Corey Seidman, Thu, August 19, 2010 03:37 PM | Comments: 25

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, a Phillies club official responded “maybe” when asked if the team was interested in signing the recently released Brad Hawpe.

Rosenthal also mentions the White Sox and Rangers as other possible fits, but notes that the Red Sox are unlikely to make a play for the lefthanded first baseman/outfielder.

In exactly 300 plate appearances this year, Hawpe has produced a .255/.343/.432 line, good for a league average .776 OPS. When you consider that Hawpe is a slow, poor fielding outfielder who will ultimately be relegated to first base duty only, this league average OPS is less valuable. After all, first base is the most competitive offensive position.

But don’t let the small 2010 sample dissuade you from recognizing the potential bench boost Hawpe would bring – from 2006-2009, Hawpe produced a very impressive .288/.384/.518 slash-line. The .902 OPS was 25% better than league average.

And the above numbers come without a caveat, because Hawpe was one of the few players who produced at essentially the same level at Coors Field and away from it.

Despite the line of thought that says “the Phils don’t need Hawpe, they already have two lefthanded hitting first basemen in Ryan Howard and Ross Gload,” I actually see Hawpe as a worthwhile signing.

Hawpe would be an upgrade over Greg Dobbs, and could potentially give the Phillies a postseason bench of: Gload, Hawpe, Francisco, Schneider, Valdez.

That is, by all means, an attractive bench. You would have two lefty power threats in Gload and Hawpe, a solid righty bat in Francisco, a backup catcher, and a superb defensive utility infielder.

If the Phillies decide to go with a six-man bench, which they probably would since a rotation of Halladay-Hamels-Oswalt doesn’t leave room for a ton of relief innings, Mike Sweeney would also likely find himself on the roster.

Dom Brown’s Immediate Future

A Hawpe signing would obviously leave Domonic Brown off the postseason roster (assuming the Phils get there).

Aside from his 441-foot bomb Wednesday night, Brown hasn’t exactly set the world on fire as a starter or pinch-hitter. As is common with most rookies, Brown’s poor plate discipline has kept him from producing at a high level.

But don’t be worried – he has shown flashes of amazing power in his brief tenure in The Show and this experience will assuredly prepare him for full-time duty next year.

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About Corey Seidman

Corey Seidman has written 210 articles on Phillies Nation.

Corey is Analysis Editor for Phillies Nation and also writes for CSNPhilly.com.

  • Posts: 0 Psh

    So Lee is not an upgrade at all for the braves ,but Hawpe is? please.

  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    I would pass. .190 BA in the second half with no power and a .211 away BA, .290 at home in hitter friendly Coors field. I’d stay with Brown and let him get some Post season experience. Sweeney needs to stay on the roster and he will.

    Braves losing 6-2 in the 9th. Can they pull it out down 4? No way I say!

  • Posts: 312 Corey Seidman

    Avatar of Corey Seidman

    Come on Joe! That’s a reaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaally small sample of at-bats. The Rockies only released him because they have an excess of outfielders and young guys they wanted to keep on the 25-man roster. This is still a guy with several productive old-man skills: power and plate discipline.

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    Can’t sell me either Corey. Too many upsides with keeping Brown & Sweeney. I had Hawpe on my fantasy team 3 years ago and he was not bad but everything he has, we got and more. How about someone faster than a turtle on the bases (just in case…) -

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    And there you have it – Nats salvage a win vs the Bravos. Finally!

  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    Phils can pull to within 1.5 tonight. Oh yeah!

  • Posts: 0 psujoe


    If it came down to Hawpe or Dobbs, I’d take Hawpe. I just think Brown provides you with more options. Brown could be a very good pinch runner late in games. Brown is young though. I’m going to trust RAJ on this. After pulling in Oswalt I have his back.

  • Posts: 0 NJ

    With all the bitching and moaning about wanting the bullpen and bench upgraded and we can get Hawpe for the pro-rated veteran minimum… I hope we do sign him and I don’t think it in any way affects Brown who there is no advantage to pushing faster than he can develop.

    Look at a guy like Swisher who fell off the map and suddenly every forgot about him as he became more effective as a role player, Hawpe can give the outfield a hell of a lot of flexibility.


    braves lost must take advantage tonight………..

  • Posts: 0 Bart Shart

    I believe Hawpe could indeed help a team. Only marginally the Phillies though. We should focus on a pitcher, a relief pitcher preferably a left handed one. I like Brown and Sweeney. Go for the bullpen help.

  • Posts: 0 Manny

    Hawpe is good… but wouldn’t it be more valuable to have a pinch-runner on the bench (read: Dom Brown) in a potential playoff game, than a left-handed, slow hitter? (Or maybe they’re expecting Howard to take two more weeks.. who knows!?)

  • Posts: 0 Bart Shart

    Brown’s seasoning is not to be underestimated. If he is going to be the coverboy for this franchise, then he should see play in the stretch drive and playing time in the playoffs.

  • Posts: 0 Sam

    Keep Brown or I walk lol

  • Posts: 0 loupossehl

    OT but interesting:

    On why Joe Blanton started on Wednesday night. Philly-area folks may have seen this in the Daily News, but for out-of-area sorts such as myself – see


  • Posts: 0 adam

    I like adding Hawpe. I think he brings a stronger bat than anyone on the bench, right around the same level as Gload or Disco. Since you’re right about the 3-man rotation and probably going with a 6-man bench, I’d rather see Dom Brown out there than Sweeney. I always liked the player, but he doesn’t bring that much anymore. I’d definitely take Hawpe over him any day, that’s what it comes down to for me.

  • Posts: 0 NJ

    I agree wholly Brown will be as much of a face of the franchise as Howard and Utley have been but he’s played few enough games he’ll still be a rookie next year.

    Hawpe is too good a player to not kick the tyres, this isn’t the Giles brother or Kris Benson, Hawpe is a legit everyday major leaguer who could help the Phils down the stretch and go a long way to giving the Phils insurance if/when Werth leaves if the club re-signs him.

  • Posts: 0 jt

    They need pass the phils already got gload and sweeney who hit left handed…I’d take a right handed bat or a left handed reliver…

  • Posts: 0 NJ

    Sweeney’s a right handed bat…

    We have on the bench:
    Sweeney RHB 1st basemen
    Gload LHB 1st/OF
    Ben-Fran RHB OF
    Valdez- RHB Utility infielder
    Schneider- LHB Catcher

    Hawpe is left handed bat who’s hit no less than .283 with well over 20 homers on the 4 seasons prior to this one with an OPS pretty much around .900 playing RF.

    I want to see Brown play but if we can bring Hawpe in and kick the tyres with him seeing if he can win an everyday job next year and force a trade.

    Oh and to those who’ll bring up the Coors effect, his numbers are virtually identical home to away… He’s just having a down year like many Rox long-timers.

  • Posts: 0 The Dipsy

    NJ – How would Hawpe force a trade? Move him to RF, Werth to CF, and Ibanez stays in LF and trading Shane?

    The Dipsy

  • Posts: 0 NJ

    No as I said before Hawpe is insurance if Werth walks, remember as Buster Olney apparently said earlier, Hawpe was coveted in the off-season but the Rockies seem terrible at making trades for their non-star veterans.

    Hawpe has I think it’s a $10m club option which obviously won’t be exercised but if he likes playing here and re-signs he’s insurance for Brown and is a far superior player to Ben Fran.

    The guys hit 25/85/.280 pretty consistently so why not bring him in see if a change of scene wins him a job. I’m all for competition especially when one starting outfielders going to be a rookie and the other in the final year of his deal.

  • Posts: 0 The Dipsy

    Sorry NJ. Duh. The whole Werth things slipped my mind. That would make for a horrible defensive outfield, though. That is a good idea.

    The Dipsy

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Dipsy had too many Four Locos tonight with the trading Shane. Think about next year assuming we lose Werth. We have Gload, Ben, Sweeney dont think we need another what we need is a late inning relief .

  • Posts: 0 Bob in Bucks

    Bad fit. Phils need a RH and LH bench bat in Sweeney and Gload. I would keep Gload over Hawpe. Dobbs is already off the 25 man roster so he is not in the running, this year or next.

    Given money concerns we stick with the rookies for next year.

  • Posts: 0 Bruce

    Simply put, I totally agreed with Bob in Bucks who is on target with his logical reasoning. By the way, I’m most impressed with Sweeney. He has become a valuable asset as a good contact hitter (as his career stats would indicate) and above average fielding. Plus his enthusiasm is so refreshing and good chemistry for the club.

  • [...] Brad Hawpe was released, and now the Phillies might be interested? – Phillies Nation Considering the inevitable departure of Jayson Werth, it might not be a bad exploration to bring in a guy like Hawpe, whom despite my disrepsect for him, is still a solid potential everyday outfielder. [...]

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