March 1, 2012; Clearwater, FL, USA; Philadelphia Phillies center fielder Juan Pierre (10) during photo day at Bright House Networks Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE
Pierre was competing with another aging speedster, Scott Podsednik, for the last spot on the Phillies' major league roster. Podsednik, 36, had a great spring as he hit .362 with five steals. He even had a game winning home run on Tuesday. Pierre on the other hand is hitting .289 and has been caught stealing three times in five attempts.
The Phillies will go on track record, as Pierre hit .279 in 2011 while Podsednik didn't play in the majors last year. Pierre has been criticized for his production relative to the five year, $44MM contract he signed in 2006. While both his offense and defense has slipped, his track record of extraordinary speed and base running should not be forgotten. He stole 27 bases in 2011 and 68 bases just two years ago in 2010. Pierre will likely share time in the Phillies outfield with Laynce Nix and John Mayberry, Jr.