Phillies bring up Odubel Herrera: 'We just felt it was time' originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
The Phillies made a flurry of roster moves before Monday's series opener against the Cardinals in St. Louis.
Complete coverage of the Fightin' Phils and their MLB rivals from NBC Sports Philadelphia.
The big one: Odubel Herrera was called up from the alternate site. He will start in center field and bat seventh Monday night.
Herrera becomes the fourth player to start at the center field position for the Phillies this season. The Phils have gotten woeful production from the previous three, Roman Quinn, Adam Haseley and Mickey Moniak. Haseley left the team for personal reasons two weeks ago. Moniak was sent to the alternate site on Monday as the Phils cleared room on the active roster for Herrera.
The Phillies have also gotten poor production from leadoff man Andrew McCutchen. He was not in Monday night's starting lineup. Brad Miller was set to bat leadoff and play left field.
Herrera could eventually become an option at leadoff.
Herrera has not played in the majors in 23 months. He served an 85-game suspension in 2019 for violating Major League Baseball's policy against domestic violence.
"We just felt it was time," manager Joe Girardi said of the decision to bring Herrera to the majors. Girardi went on to say that Herrera's at-bats at the alternate site had been good.
There had been a question of whether Herrera would be welcomed back into the clubhouse. Girardi said he's continually spoken to players about the matter to see if there would be any objections.
"If it was a big issue, it would have been brought to my attention," the manager said. "That has not been the case."
It remains to be seen how Herrera will be accepted by the fans. The answer will come when the Phillies return home Friday night.
In other pregame news Monday:
- The Phillies sent pitchers Spencer Howard and Bailey Falter to the alternate site. Howard will be stretched out as a starter. The Phils have had performance issues at the back end of the rotation. Howard could offer a potential solution at some point, though the team remains cognizant of his innings/workload.
- Reliever Jose Alvarado was activated from COVID protocol and will be available in the bullpen Monday night. Starting pitcher Matt Moore was also activated from the COVID list. He will not jump right back into the rotation Wednesday night. Vince Velasquez will get that start while the team gauges Moore's readiness.