Brandon Phillips

Brandon Phillips

Brandon Phillips

2B, DH, SS
June 28, 1981
200 lbs
Major League Debut:
9-13-2002 with CLE
Allstar Selections:
2008 GG, 2010 GG

Brandon Emil Phillips (born June 28, 1981) is a second baseman for Major League Baseball's Cincinnati Reds. [1][2]

The Raleigh, North Carolina native was selected in the second round of the 1999 draft by the former Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals) after signing a letter of intent to play both baseball and football at the University of Georgia. He instead signed with the Expos on June 21, 1999.

Phillips was traded to the Cincinnati Reds on April 7, 2006 for a player to be named later, which turned out to be right-handed pitcher Jeff Stevens.

Early Life

Phillips attended Redan High School in Stone Mountain, Georgia, where he played basketball and baseball. His #7 at Redan was retired by the school in December 2003. Phillips' favorite baseball player growing up was Cincinnati Reds shortstop Barry Larkin.[3]

Professional Career

Early career
After signing with the Montreal Expos in 1999, he played for the Jupiter Hammerheads. He finished the season with a .292 batting average, 22 home runs, 59 RBI, 3 triples, and 30 steals.

On June 27, 2002, Phillips was part of a six-player trade that sent him from the Montreal Expos to the Cleveland Indians. Phillips was dealt along with Grady Sizemore, Cliff Lee, and Lee Stevens in exchange for Bartolo Colón and Tim Drew.[4]

In 2003, Phillips won the starting job at second base for the Indians. During the season, he had a season-high 6-game hitting streak. Against the Detroit Tigers on May 20, he hit the first three-run walk-off home run of his career. After that he went 0 for 29 and was sent down to Triple-A after the All-Star break. He was recalled soon after that due to an injury to one of his teammates and finished the season with a .208 average, 6 homers, 33 RBI and 4 stolen bases. Phillips also totaled a .981 fielding percentage.

In 2004, he started the season in Triple-A. He hit .303 with 14 stolen bases on the season and recorded 18-game and 16-game hitting streaks. In the minor league play-offs, Phillips hit .308.

He joined the Indians at the end of the season and played 6 games for them.

Phillips remained in Triple-A for most of 2005. He appeared in six games for the Indians in July but was sent back down following the stint.

Cincinnati Reds

2006–2007 Seasons
On April 7, 2006, Cleveland's frustration with Phillips' slow progress peaked and he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds for a player to be named later (pitcher Jeff Stevens).[4] He made an immediate impact, starting the season by being named NL Player of the Week the same month he was acquired by the Reds, hitting .452 (14–31) with 3 home runs and 17 runs batted in for the week of April 17–23. Phillips' 17 RBI were the most for an NL Player of the Week since Sammy Sosa had 19 RBI the week of August 4–10, 2002. Phillips had his first career grand slam that month and 16 straight stolen bases. leading the Reds in hits (148) and multi-hit games (36). He also led all National League second basemen in stolen bases with 25. He produced two 9-game hitting streaks over the season and ended with a batting average of .276, 17 home runs and 75 RBI.

In 2007, Phillips hit 30 home runs and stole 32 bases to become the first Reds second basemen to join the 30–30 club and just the third 30–30 Red, joining Eric Davis (37 HR, 50 SB in 1987) and Barry Larkin (33 HR, 36 SB in 1996). He also joined Alfonso Soriano as just the second second baseman in the 30-30 club.[3]

On July 3, 2007, Phillips broke a 3–3 tie with the San Francisco Giants by hitting a grand slam that gave the Reds a 7–3 win. In the fourth inning on August 1, 2007, game, against John Lannan of the Washington Nationals Phillips stole two bases on one pitch while the Nationals had a shift on Adam Dunn. On August 30 2007, Phillips made the play of the month to win the game for the Reds against the Pittsburgh Pirates. With the Reds winning 5–4 in the bottom of the 9th, Nate McLouth of the Pirates hit a single into right field. The runner from second, Josh Phelps, appeared likely to score but Phillips grabbed the ball in shallow right field bare-handed and threw Phelps out at home plate to win the game. On September 5, 2007, he hit his 28th home run of the season, breaking the Reds' single-season record for home runs by a second baseman, formerly held by Joe Morgan.[5] On September 26, 2007, Phillips hit his 30th home run of the season.

In addition to the home runs and steals, Phillips ended the 2007 season with 187 hits, 107 runs, 26 doubles, 6 triples 94 RBIs, and a .288 batting average. He led the Reds in runs, hits, triples, and stolen bases and was second on the team in doubles and home runs.

Phillips received a four-year, $27 million contract extension on February 15, 2008, instead of going to arbitration.[6]

2008 Season
On April 2, Phillips hit his first home run of the season against the Arizona Diamondbacks. At the end of April, he hit a pinch-hit 9th inning home run against the San Francisco Giants in the 3–1 loss. Two days later, in the April 27 victory over the Giants, he hit two home runs and three RBI. In the first month of the season, Phillips batted .283 with 5 home runs, 13 RBI, and four stolen bases.

To open up July, Phillips had a 3 for 5 game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. In the 6–5 loss, Phillips hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning to tie the game and send it into extra innings. On July 5, Phillips drove in Jerry Hairston, Jr. for the game-winning single RBI.

Brandon Phillips signing autographs in 2008At the All-Star Break, Phillips was batting .287 with 15 home runs, 58 RBI, 18 stolen bases, and 18 doubles. Shortly after the All-Star Game, Phillips hit his 16th home run of the season against the Chicago Cubs and his 17th against the New York Mets.

To open August, Phillips hit triples in back-to-back games against the Milwaukee Brewers and the Houston Astros, then finished the three-game stint with a home run in the third game against the Astros. He opened the following series against the Pittsburgh Pirates with a two-run homer. Then, Phillips closed out the next series against the St. Louis Cardinals with home runs in back-to-back games to reach his 20th of the season. The final game of the series marked the second consecutive season that he had joined the 20-20 club.

Phillips also won his first gold glove in 2008, leading National League 2nd basemen with a .990 fielding percentage having made just 7 errors in 706 chances,[7] in addition to a 78-game error-less streak.[8] He also won a Fielding Bible Award as the top fielding second baseman in MLB.[9]

2009 Season
Brandon Phillips batting for the Reds in 2009In 2009, Phillips hit .276, with 30 doubles, 20 home runs, 98 RBI and 25 stolen bases.









2010 Season
In 2010, Phillips had his first All-Star season. He finished the season batting .275, with 18 homers, 59 RBI and 16 stolen bases.

In early August, Phillips made national sports headlines with unflattering remarks about the St. Louis Cardinals, a team the Reds were in a hotly contested race with for lead in the National League Central division. Phillips was quoted in a Dayton, Ohio newspaper as saying "I hate the Cardinals. All they do is bitch and moan about everything, all of them, they're little bitches, all of them. I hate the Cardinals."[10] The next night, August 10, Phillips was involved in a large bench-clearing brawl between the Reds and Cardinals at home plate. Coming to bat in the bottom of the 1st inning, Phillips customarily tapped his bat against the shin pads of Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina and the umpire. Molina kicked Phillips bat which led to seven minutes of pushing and shoving between both teams before both team managers were ejected and order restored.

On November 10, 2010, it was announced that Phillips had won the second Gold Glove of his major league career.

On May 3rd, against the Houston Astros, Phillips had an amazing play in which he threw out speedy Jason Bourgeois by picking up the ball barehanded as it rolled to him and throwing it to first baseman Joey Votto between his legs to record the out. [11] On July 1st, Phillips hit 2 home runs against the Cleveland Indians, the 2nd homer being his 1,000th career hit. After several great plays in the field earned him notoriety around the country and his average stayed around .300 the whole first half, Phillips made his second straight All-Star game. He was in first place in voting for most of the year until Milwaukee's Rickie Weeks passed him, getting the starting nod.

On July 15, 2011 Phillips hit a two out two run walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-5 at Great American Ballpark.


   3. a b Sheldon, Mark (September 27, 2007). "Good company: Phillips in 30–30 club". Retrieved May 13, 2009.
   4. a b "Brandon Phillips Transactions". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved May 13, 2009.
   5. Sheldon, Mark (September 5, 2007). "Rookies Votto, Shearn shine in win Phillips adds record homer as Reds power past Mets". Retrieved May 13, 2009.
   6. Associated Press (February 16, 2008). "Reds, Phillips agree to deal, avoid arbitration hearing". Retrieved February 7, 2009.
   8. Sheldon, Mark (November 5, 2008). "Phillips picks up first Gold Glove Award". Retrieved May 13, 2009.
   9. "The 2008 Awards". The Fielding Bible. Archived from the original on November 17, 2010. Retrieved November 17, 2010.
  10.,brandon-phillips-reds-cardinals-brawl-11.article. [dead link]

1000 hits, 30-30, All Star, Brandon Phillips, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Fielding Bible Award, Gold Glove, Jupiter Hammerheads, Montreal Expos, Washington Nationals
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