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Freddy Galvis in Center Field Could Enable Darin Ruf Callup

May 15, 2013, 9:45 AM EDT


Freddy Galvis’ versatility has offered Charlie Manuel plenty of flexibility with his lineup card. But his latest dimension, potentially taking his Gold Glove-caliber defense to center field, could do the same for the roster.

Specifically, it could allow the organization to DFA John Mayberry Jr. to callup Darin Ruf.

Some cold water first. Galvis has yet to step foot in center at any level. While Manuel said it’s likely to happen here and soon, it’s tough to imagine Galvis impressing enough within the foreseeable future to justify dropping the only true backup center fielder (in other words, not Laynce Nix) on the roster. Which is what would happen, seeing as Mayberry is out of options.

Still, Mayberry’s roster spot has been all but secured, not because of his .244 average and .300 on-base percentage over the past two years, but because he figured to be Ben Revere’s only spell. In theory, this would lower that shield. Between this streaky Phillies offense and Ruf’s .365 average with nine RBI in his last 14 games at Triple-A, maybe enough to necessitate a move.

Maybe the biggest perk here is that it would break the linkage between Ruf and Delmon Young. Manuel said only yesterday that he expects Young’s .176/.250/.265 line since his 2013 debut to elevate. But how long does Manuel give it? Another month and a half, and the Phillies season could be over. Galvis-to-center/Mayberry-to-waivers would enable making Ruf a reinforcement in time to keep the Phillies relevant.

It also gives Manuel more ways to get Galvis’ bat in the lineup and help it develop even further.

As for a timetable: Circle their June 11-13 series in Minnesota. That allows the organization to debut Ruf (a) on the road and (b) as a DH first, kind of how they did Young in Cleveland. It also gives Manuel time to break in Galvis in center and observe Ruf and Mayberry heading in divergent directions — assuming that happens and means Ruf isn’t the one to struggle.

Reasons for calling up Ruf are easy. He’s right-handed, actually hits lefties, can tap out Howard without a major offensive compromise (as there would be with Mayberry, Nix or Kevin Frandsen) and, you know, may or may not have 40-home run potential, something you’d probably want to find out about sooner rather than later. Especially since here, “later” could be after the complete deconstruction of your roster.

The question is, does Galvis playing center create a roster spot for him?

  1. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    While I agree that the outfield needs help and Ruf is a hot hand at the moment, moving Galvis to center straps them in the infield where Manuel made it a point to say that Rollins and Utley would get significant breaks over the course of the season in order to be 100% healthy. Outside of Frandsen, who else would assist in these breaks that Manuel was committed to?

    • Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:29 AM

      Also filled by Galvis. He’s not bound to CF every game. Mayberry slides over, Galvis gives Utley/Rollins their days off, Frandsen corners, etc.

      • Matt Hammond - May 15, 2013 at 10:32 AM

        in fairness, Mayberry isn’t on the team in this scenario. (that’s kinda the point.)

        but yeah, he’s got the right point. Galvis could still man the infield some days, too.

    • Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:30 AM

      heeey we’re all anonymous

      • BenE. - May 15, 2013 at 11:00 AM

        This sounds like a will H comment

      • Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 11:18 AM


  2. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:32 AM

    I think the article is saying Galvis would be Revere’s primary backup in center rather than Mayberry. When Revere is in center, Galvis would be available to spell any of the infield spots.

  3. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    This needs to happen sooner, rather than later.

    Just looking at OPS, Galvis needs to be in this lineup more consistently. Galvis has an OPS above .800. This probably isn’t sustainable, but it is way better than Mayberry, Revere, and D. Young. The Phillies need to stop being stupid and put the best producing lineup on the field. This also means calling up Ruf and dropping Delmon Young or Mayberry.

  4. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    who let the dogs out.. ruf ruf ruf

  5. BenE. - May 15, 2013 at 11:02 AM

    If they drop Mayberry and call up Ruf, what’s the worse that can happen? The Phillies will be a sub-.500 team?

  6. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 11:45 AM

    It would make a lot more sense to DFA DYoung and keep Mayberry.

    • Matt Hammond - May 15, 2013 at 7:16 PM

      Probably. But what if Delmon Young becomes 20 HR a year guy starting tomorrow? This simply gives Amaro (who’d be making the decision, not Manuel) more options.

  7. Anonymous - May 15, 2013 at 12:34 PM

    They should platoon Howard and Ruf at 1B!

  8. Seriously? - May 16, 2013 at 12:29 AM

    Why doesn’t he catch and start throwing bullpen sessions also?. Moving from SS to 2nd ain’t this bro….

    • Matt Hammond - May 16, 2013 at 12:32 AM

      You do realize this is already happening, right?

  9. Dahsir - May 23, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    Not calling up Ruf makes absolutely and positively no sense. He’s 26 and we’re wasting his best years in Lehigh. It is simply a byproduct of the fact that Charlie (I love him but he’s got his faults) refuses to platoon Brown or Howard. The ironic thing is that Howard prob needs as much rest as Rollins/Utley to stay healthy.

    A perfect comparison (for me) is Gattis on the Braves, although Gattis is a bit more versatile since he can play catcher. The Braves have been using Gattis as a utility man since his bat is so hot. If you give Howard every few games off and Brown a game off once a week, Ruf could almost be starting half the games, not to mention pinch hitting.

    Our window may be pretty much closed but it’s also not opening any more in the future considering Howard’s production is only going to decline and we’ve mortgaged our farm system already. As low as the possibility is, we’re only a game behind the Nats and ~5 off the WC and Division. It’s not great but I’m afraid we’re about to fall back into our late 90s team, with Lee or Hamels playing the role of Schilling.


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