The Phillies also rank in the bottom 10 of the league in batting average (.244) and slugging percentage (.379). Yet, Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro is confident his struggling squad will turn it around.
"I don’t have a crystal ball that says it will and it hasn’t shown the consistency that would make you think it will. But there are reasons they have those numbers on the back of their baseball cards," Amaro told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "I think when it’s all said and done, we will have more productive numbers than we do right now as a group. But it is concerning that we haven’t had more consistency at this stage of the season."
Amaro said he has looked at ways to improve the lineup.
"It’s not like we haven’t looked into ways to improve our club," he said. "Because of the nature of what’s happening across the league, you don’t see a whole lot of movement. I don’t think a lot of teams feel like they know what they have yet, so you’re not seeing anything more than waiver-wire claims."
Jones will still hit cleanup for the team. He'll faceoff against Phil Hughes. Chris Dickerson will start for Jones in center. Jones is hitting .319/.354/.492 in 185 at-bats this year.
Nick Swisher is not in the team's lineup for family reasons, and will be replaced by Mark Reynolds, opening a spot for Giambi. Giambi will DH and hit seventh against Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer.
"I think we have to be concerned any time our guys have any issues, but I don’t think it’s something that is so daunting that we’re panicking about it," Amaro told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "It’s something we have to be aware of and make sure he does his proper rehab to address it and make sure he’s OK. If there is a meniscus issue, it is repairable and there are some things he can do that can help alleviate some of the stuff he had."
Altuve rejoined Scott Pucino and Wil Polidor of Octagon, where he left about a year ago for Boras. Altuve is still under team control through the 2017 season, so he won't be a free agent anytime soon. He won't be arbitration-eligible until 2015. Altuve is hitting .327/.361/.430 in 165 at-bats.
Gomes admitted it's easier to "evaluate" himself in a full-time role, but he's OK with being a part-time player as long as it helps the team. "To me, it’s valuable to just win. I know everybody wants to win. If I play and we win, I don’t really care what else happens," Gomes said. He said you have to "grind and fight" as a platoon player, and be willing to "get hit in the neck if you have to."
Gomes is hitting .190/.347/.316 in 79 at-bats. He's seen an equal amount of at-bats against both righties and lefties, but is starting to be used primarily against left-handers.