ATLANTA — After one game, the Phillies roster has undergone change.
They claimed outfielder Ezequiel Carrera off waivers from Cleveland and designated outfielder Ender Inciarte for assignment Tuesday. The move is a shuffle of fifth outfielders. With a hole in right field and no particularly good answer for at least a month, Carrera could stand to gain playing time.
The 25-year-old Venezuelan led the majors with 11 stolen bases this spring. He has 116 games of major-league experience, all with the Indians, and a career .653 OPS. Of those 116 games, 88 were starts.
Carrera, a lefthanded hitter, was out of options and designated for assignment March 25 by Cleveland. Earlier in the spring, Indians manager Terry Francona said, "His speed impacts the game."
He can play all three outfield positions, with the majority of his time coming in center field. Carrera was originally signed by the New York Mets from Venezuela.
Charlie Manuel started John Mayberry Jr. in right field Monday. He said he has no problem platooning Mayberry and Laynce Nix until Delmon Young's return from ankle surgery. Young was scheduled to play the outfield for three innings in an extended spring training game Tuesday.
But Young's addition to the roster is not imminent and the team is not enamored of Mayberry nor Nix. In an ideal world, one of them swings a hot bat and earns the majority of at-bats. If not, Carrera enters the equation.
Inciarte, 22, did not appear in Monday's season opener. As a Rule 5 pick, the Phillies were required to keep him on the active roster for all of 2013. It was a challenge, considering he had never played a game above single A. The Phillies could have attempted to trade for his rights with Arizona.
If a team claims Inciarte off waivers, they must follow the same Rule 5 stipulations. If he clears waivers, the Diamondbacks recover his rights. The Phillies will receive $25,000 in exchange.
Carrera will be in uniform Wednesday, the Phillies said.
EXTRA BASES. Chase Utley became the 13th second baseman in history with 200 home runs. The others: Jeff Kent, Rogers Hornsby, Craig Biggio, Ryne Sandberg, Joe Morgan, Joe Gordon, Bret Boone, Lou Whitaker, Bobby Grich, Bobby Doerr, Dan Uggla and Roberto Alomar. ... Monday's game achieved the highest opening-day rating on PHL17 in the last 17 years. It averaged an 11.5 household rating and was the No. 1 program in the Philadelphia market. ... Mike Schmidt, George Brett and comedian Joe Piscopo will throw the ceremonial first pitches prior to Friday's home opener at Citizens Bank Park vs. Kansas City.
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