As seen in the July 5th game versus the Washington Nationals, Brandon Phillips continues to be the most clutch and still most underrated second baseman in the Major Leagues. The once highly touted shortstop prospect turned garbage heap Indian, now All-pro Red, Phillips is in my opinion the best second baseman in all of baseball.
I will give you that he may not lead every offensive category such as the all important home run, but he ranks in the tops of all categories. The 30 HR-30 SB player from last year may reach those numbers again (currently 14-17). Phillips ranks 4th in AB's (343), 7th in runs (50), 5th in SLG (.490), 3rd in HR (14), and 3rd in SB (17).
Phillips is a team leader and the fan favorite in Cincinnati. Defensively he is 5th in put outs (181), 2nd in innings played (751), 1st in Fld % (.998), and 1st in error's (1).
On a club that needs leadership, Phillips is clearly becoming the vocal leader of a young team. With Adam Dunn and Ken Griffey Jr possibly testing free agency, Phillips will be left as the clear team leader. Cincinnati has not had a captain or clear leader since the days of future Hall of Famer Barry Larkin. Phillips said to ownership that he wants to be in Cincinnati and that tone will set precedent for all of the young players rising in the Reds ranks.