The Phillies used their 2003 draft picks to acquire speed. With no picks in the first two rounds - thanks to signing Jim Thome and David Bell - the Phillies selected Tim Moss, Michael Bourn and Javon Moran. The moves filled a need for speed and all three players were seen as similar type players. Moss started slowly primarily because of health issues, while Bourn and Moran put up very similar numbers at Batavia. The following season, the Phillies needed pitching and the Reds liked both outfielders, but leaned toward Moran and the end result was a deal to bring Cory Lidle to Philadelphia.
Bourn has progressed well and skipped over the High-A level to move directly from Lakewood to Reading for the 2005 season. He started 2006 back at Reading, but was moved to Triple-A and then to the majors later in the season. Moran has taken a slower path, splitting the last two seasons between High-A and Double-A ball.
2004 through 2006
|Minor Lg Totals||16||138||.285||362||1427||268||407||48||35||140||204||311||.377|
|Minor Lg Totals||4||54||.314||285||1101||172||346||42||15||90||66||177||.363|
With Moran back in the fold, the Phillies again have more speed in the organization and have three outfielders to look to in the near future (Bourn, Moran and Chris Roberson). As often happens, things will probably play out to a point where at least one of them will fall by the wayside or possibly be dealt elsewhere.
Scouting Report: Javon Moran has plenty of speed and uses it well. The problem is that he simply swings at too many pitches and doesn't work the count as much as he should. With some more discipline, his on-base percentage could climb, since he does make decent contact and doesn't strike out too much, especially compared to Bourn. The big difference in the two is that Bourn is much more likely to take a walk than Moran.
Ironically, the right-handed hitting Moran hit right-handed pitching at a far better clip in 2006 than he did left-handers (.341 vs. .279). He also showed signs of choking with runners on base and hit just .192 with runners in scoring position and just .256 with any runners on base while batting a lusty .356 with the bases empty.
Some plate discipline would go a long way to improving Moran's stock and the Phillies will likely stress that in the spring.