Victorino will skip his final rehab assignment with the Reading Phillies, who were playing this morning before I even woke up.
The center fielder, who strained his right hamstring and landed on the DL May 19, homered in Wednesday’s game. They yanked him early in the game and told him to get ready to return to the Phillies.
Victorino’s rehab stint was finished in four games, two with Single A Lakewood and two with AA Reading.
But with the return of the Phils best outfielder comes the question of who gets sent down in his return.
If the Phillies opt to send reliever Mike Zagurski back down, it will leave them with 11 pitchers (four starters, seven relievers).
But they could also send down one of their handful of outfielders.
Raul Ibanez, Domonic Brown and John Mayberry appear to be going nowhere. But Ben Francisco and Michael Martinez may just be considered.
Francisco has been struggling after a hot start in the opening weeks. He has also become an afterthought with the return of Brown and Mayberry’s new workload. Martinez is the obvious guy to go as he has no place on this club. But he’s a Rule 5 player and if the Phils send him down, they’ll have to offer him back to his former club (see David Herndon last season).
I for one don’t care if the Phils lose Martinez. He’s a younger version of Delwyn Young, who is in AAA Lehigh Valley. Martinez is not a major league player yet and there currently is no room for him on the big league roster.
Instead of selling themselves short in the pen, Martinez needs to be optioned tomorrow when Victorino is ready to return.