Moniak breaks hand, will miss Opening Day
PHILADELPHIA -- Mickey Moniak spoke excitedly earlier this week about making his first Opening Day roster for the Phillies. But he suffered a hairline fracture in his right hand in Wednesday’s Grapefruit League finale against the Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., a source told MLB.com on Thursday, and will not be on Philadelphia’s Opening Day roster.
Double-A Reading outfielder Símon Muzziotti will take Moniak’s place on the 28-man roster, although an official announcement is not expected until Friday. Muzziotti, 23, is the Phillies’ No. 22 prospect, but he has just 83 plate appearances since 2019.
Moniak will miss four to six weeks, as first reported by 97.3 ESPN in Atlantic City.
It is a cruel ending to a promising spring for Moniak. He batted .378 (14-for-37) with four doubles, six home runs, 11 RBIs and a 1.351 OPS. It seemed very likely that he would have been in the Phillies’ lineup on Opening Day on Friday against the A’s at Citizens Bank Park against Oakland right-hander Frankie Montas.
Moniak began camp blocked in the outfield by Bryce Harper, Nick Castellanos, Kyle Schwarber, Odúbel Herrera, Matt Vierling and Adam Haseley. But Herrera suffered a mild strain of his right oblique early on in camp, and he will open the season on the injured list. The Phillies then traded Haseley to the White Sox late last month for a High-A pitcher, right-hander McKinley Moore.
With Herrera sidelined and Haseley gone, the Phillies had only two options on the 40-man roster to replace Moniak: Muzziotti and Jhailyn Ortiz. Of those options, only Muzziotti can play center field.
Muzziotti did not play in 2020 after the Minor League season was canceled because of the pandemic and then had visa issues in 2021. He had 83 plate appearances in the Phillies’ system, then 24 more in Winter Ball. The Phillies could look to make a move to provide additional outfield depth until Moniak returns.