When you hear people talk about the best National League second basemen, Brandon Phillips name usually has to come up in the conversation. He is among the best at his position and can literally throw a team on his shoulders at times. His 2012 season was basically a snapshot of his career numbers as hovered fairly close to each of them. One thing I have always loved as a fan about Brandon Phillips is that you know what you are going to get. He is always going to hit the ball hard, field the ball well and steal a few bases. Any team would consider themselves lucky to have his services and my Cincinnati Reds are no exception.
The Pop Remains
Brandon Phillips is still hitting the ball hard as evidenced by his 18 home runs in 2012. He has been right at that number now for three straight years and although it is less than he hit during his early days, it is more than enough for this Cincinnati Reds team. Phillips provides the Reds with more than enough power out of the second base position and still hits them out with more regularity than the average second baseman.
A Slight Dip in Run Production
Although Phillips hit the ball hard and played about the same number of games as usual, he did see a slight decrease in his runs scored and runs batted in. Phillips crossed the plate 86 times and drove in 77 runs on the season. That is down from 94 runs and 82 runs batted in during the 2011 season, though not by enough to really signal concern.
A Red Hot Post Season
Although the Reds season ended up in heartbreak, Phillips certainly did his part to try to prevent it. During the 2012 playoffs he was at his very best. Not only did he drive in seven runs, but he also knocked the cover off the ball at a .375 clip. He had at least one hit in every single playoff game. Phillips always seems to come up big when the team needs him and the 2012 playoffs is a perfect example of this.
Signed Through 2017
The Reds signed Phillips to a long term deal in April that will keep him in Cincinnati through the 2017 season and it cost them $72.5 million to do it. Phillips means a great deal to the city of Cincinnati and to the fans, so the signing made a great deal of sense. If Phillips can continue to produce as he did in 2012 throughout that contract, the second baseman will go down as one of the all time great Cincinnati Reds for certain.
Season Grade - B
Source - Yahoo Sports Brandon Phillips Stats
*Southern is a life-long Cincinnati Reds fan that grew up watching Pete Rose, Johnny Bench and the boys dominate the Major Leagues. He longs for those days once again in Cincinnati.
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