Brandon Phillips, looking for a contract extension that would keep him a Cincinnati Red for, say, one-half of a Joey Votto Unit, left Tuesday's loss to the St. Louis Cardinals with a hamstring injury after scoring the Reds' only run on a Jake Westbrook error. Luckily for his agent and Reds fans everywhere, it does not appear to be serious.
Phillips, in the last season of a five-year deal signed after he went 30-30 in 2007, hit .300/.353/.457 last year with 18 home runs, 14 stolen bases and 82 RBI. After years of his overall production being held back by a mediocre on-base percentage, it was the best season of his career—worth 4.1 WAR, according to Baseball-Reference, which has never been a fan of his defense.
Part of the hilariously misguided 2002 trade that sent Cliff Lee and Grady Sizemore to the Cleveland Indians for the chance to pretend the Montreal Expos weren't going to be moved, he arrived in Cincinnati in exchange for Jeff Stevens, the second-best player named Stevens ever to be traded for @DatDudeBP.