John Mayberry vs. Juan Pierre: Why Big John Must Start for the Phillies

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John Mayberry vs. Juan Pierre: Why Big John Must Start for the Phillies
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Many people, including myself, looked at John Mayberry Jr this year and saw Jayson Werth circa 2008: the right side of a platoon that would play so well Charlie Manuel would have no choice but to play him every day.

Needless to say, that hasn't happened—yet. So far this season, he's hit .226 with no homers and only two RBI. Accompanying those numbers are a whopping 18 strikeouts in 53 at-bats.

On the other hand, his main competition for the starting left field job, Juan Pierre, is hitting .313 with four RBI. Ty Wigginton's sterling early-season form has also meant fewer starts for Mayberry at first base than originally thought.

As Ryan Howard's comeback tour finally starts swinging into gear, Mayberry's best place for playing time will undoubtedly be left. However, manager Charlie Manuel has fallen in love with Pierre and is denying Mayberry the playing time he desperately needs to round into form.

Don't let the numbers fool you. The Phillies are better served with Mayberry getting the lion's share of playing time in left. Here are some good reasons why.

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