The Phillies announced Wednesday that they’ve placed infielder Jean Segura on the 10-day injured list due to a strained right quadriceps and optioned righty Ramon Rosso to their alternate site in Lehigh Valley. In their place, the Phillies have recalled infielder/outfielder Scott Kingery and right-hander Spencer Howard.
The loss of Segura even for a brief period — the team has yet to provide a timeline — stings for the Phillies. The 31-year-old is out to an excellent start this season, slashing .333/.359/.450 with a homer, four doubles and a stolen base in his first 64 trips to the plate. The Phillies have bounced him around the diamond the past couple of seasons, but he’s been their everyday second baseman early in the 2021 campaign.
Second base duties will now likely fall to Kingery and utilityman Brad Miller. Kingery is looking for a rebound after a disastrous 2020 season that began with a three-week stint on the Covid-19 injured list. Kingery didn’t have any real ramp-up period to the shortened season, and the .159/.228/.283 slash he posted in 124 plate appearances was miles away from the solid .258/.315/.474 slash he logged through 458 trips to the plate in 2019. He also spent time on the IL with back spasms last season.
The hope was that a full, healthy Spring Training would get Kingery back to his 2020 form, but Kingery struggled mightily in Grapefruit League play. Through 15 games and 49 plate appearances, he cobbled together just a .159/.229/.295 slash that looked eerily similar to last year’s woeful showing. The Phils optioned him to their alternate site near the end of camp, and this will be his first chance at a rebound.
Howard, like Kingery, has long been regarded not only as one of the organization’s best prospects, but one of the best in the league. The 24-year-old struggled through 24 1/3 innings last year during his MLB debut effort and has logged just one inning thus far in 2021. While Howard has been a starter throughout his minor league career, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski indicated at the end of Spring Training that the plan for the 2021 season was to use Howard primarily out of the bullpen.