The Phillies are targeting Cardinals outfielder Jon Jay, according to Jayson Stark of ESPN.com. The Phils are apparently intrigued by what Jay did in his rookie season last year, when he hit .300/.359/.422 in 323 plate appearances and played all three outfield positions. Here’s a closer look at what the Phillies’ interest in Jay could mean:
- The Phillies are considering ways of adding outfielders to the organization, which just lost Jayson Werth. Raul Ibanez becomes a free agent after the season and Shane Victorino is eligible for free agency after 2012, so the Phillies’ outfield could look considerably different in a couple of seasons.
- The Cardinals aren't the only ones who like Jay, a career .301 hitter in the minors who ranked 13th among St. Louis' prospects before last year, according to Baseball America.
- Just because the Phillies have targeted Jay doesn’t mean they’re willing to meet the Cardinals’ asking price.
- And it doesn't mean that the Cardinals are willing to give Jay up. Before the 2010 season, Baseball America described him as a rangy outfielder with a fringy arm and a knack for hitting for average. He's under team control through 2016 and won't hit arbitration before the 2012-13 offseason, so he'll be cheap for a while.
- It doesn’t mean that Jay, who turned 26 yesterday, is the Phillies' lone target - or even their primary target.
- Philadelphia’s interest doesn’t mean they’re expecting anything less from Domonic Brown, their top prospect. The 23-year-old is recovering from hand surgery and should be ready to return soon after the season begins.