Citizens Bank Park sprung to life a little earlier than normal today as Charlie Manuel scheduled a rare fielding session prior to batting practice, with outfielders and infielders practicing cutoffs and relays. No doubt it was a response to the sloppy play the team has showed as of late, including last night, when there were several fielding miscues during a 6-1 loss to the Braves.
-There isn't much else going on at the moment. I briefly caught up with Placido Polanco, who gave little indication that he is close to returning. Polanco said he has been doing some light running, and that the next step is to field ground balls. But there are no immediate plans to start that fielding work. The only real intrigue about the situation is that Polanco could be a player who another team would take as a veteran glove for the stretch run. Even then, though, the Phillies would not get much for him besides salary relief, and the salary relief would likely be minimal.
-There has been plenty of speculation that the Phillies will target Michael Bourn this offseason, particularly in light of Ruben Amaro Jr.'s confident proclamation that the team is in position to make a run at one or more impact free agents. Yesterday, Bourn spoke briefly to Ryan Lawrence, who will be joining the staff of the Daily News in a couple of weeks after four-plus years at the Delaware County Times. He obviously wasn't interested in delving too deeply into his impending free agency. At this point, I think Bourn and Scott Boras will be looking for a huge contract, so big that any team that signs him will end up overpaying, and I don't think the Phillies are in a position where they can afford to overpay.
-Domonic Brown is batting second again tonight. He went 1-for-3 with a single and a hit-by-pitch last night out of the two-hole.