Thursday, June 7, 2012

Freddy Galvis to the DL

The Phillies have got no cleanup hitter, their All-Star second baseman has bad knees, their pets' heads are falling off....

OK, occasionally you need to work in a line from "Dumb and Dumber" to stay sane over the course of a 162-game season.

But the desperation Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunn faced in the beginning of that classic film (OK, OK, slapstick movie) relates pretty well to the current situation the Phillies find themselves in two months into the 2012 season.

They've lost a season-high five straight games.

They're six games out of the NL East lead.

They've been in last place for all but one day since May 5.

And now, another injury....

After playing all season without Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, the Phils have seen three more players head to the DL in the last 11 days. First it was Roy Halladay (out 6-8 weeks) then Jose Contreras (out for the season) and now, slick-fielding rookie second baseman Freddy Galvis

Galvis left the fifth inning of Wednesday night's 6-5 loss with lower back pain. After the game, the Phils announced that he would be placed on the disabled list, where he'll join Utley, Howard, Halladay, Contreras, Laynce Nix and relievers Mike Stutes, David Herndon and Justin De Fratus.

Galvis was only sprung into major league starting duty when Utley's knees weren't healthy enough to play this spring. A shortstop his entire life, Galvis made the transition to second base in spring training and has been a revelation in the field in the first two months of the regular season.

He makes at least one eye-catching play every game - on Wednesday, he backpedaled into shallow right center before making a behind-the-back, leaping snag of a fly ball - and has also filled in adequately at shortstop in the few games Jimmy Rollins has missed.

Galvis is hitting .226, but he's been durable (he's tied with Shane Victorino with the most games played among all major leaguers, with 58) and he's shown a knack for driving in runs. 

Galvis has 24 RBIs, fourth among major league rookies and second in the National League. His 19 extra-base hits are second only to Cincinnati's Zack Cozart.

“It’s another one of our guys going down?” manager Charlie Manuel said. “What more can I say?”

Perhaps there is nowhere to go but up?

"I feel like what’s going on wrong, sooner or later it’s going to be like the stock market and bottom out somewhere," Manuel said. "We’ll start working from there. Hopefully that was tonight."

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