The range that he showed in the field, along with his glove-work (a .996 fielding percentage) and sound baseball instincts obviously was encouraging. While his offensive efforts weren't consistent, he did manage to drive in 24 runs in 200 plate appearances.
Considering Utley's unknown status at the time, the native Venezuelan seemed to be working his way toward eventual platoon status with the team's resident second baseman. Then, two separate pieces of news appeared on everyone's digital radar screens.
Not only had Galvis somehow fractured his spine while swinging a bat, but he was later suspended 50 games for use of performance enhancing drugs.
That's it for Galvis?
How could someone who was under six feet tall and only weighed 170 pounds be using PED's? It made no sense. But, as our public education in this "new baseball science" has evolved through the years we must continue to condition ourselves for all revealed surprises.
Naturally, everyone wondered what these dual developments meant for Galvis' short- and long-term future.
Without being able to know exactly how long he had been using enhancers, it was impossible to guess how he would perform when he was "clean". The apology that he issued through the Phillies acknowledged no known use of the banned substance, which further clouded everyone's ability to make a firm projection about this young man.
Utley returned to the team in late June and played better than everyone (except he) expected. While he was hardly the same type of player that he had been in his prime, Utley's consistent efforts made it reasonable to believe that he might be able to play a full season next year. Because 2013 is the last guaranteed line on his current contract, it's possible that the Phillies will need a new second baseman in the near future.
Due to Placido Polanco's own health issues, Kevin Frandsen started 49 effective games at third base this season. Because he lacks power in his bat and doesn't have a great glove, he should secure a utility (or a platoon) position on next season's team.
Double-A third base prospect Cody Asche is projected to play in Triple-A next season. So, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. will obviously send a direct signal to him and to Galvis if he acquires a stopgap option at that spot during the offseason. If a long-term solution is obtained, Galvis will likely serve as one of the Phillies' utility infielders next season and also retain his future second base option.
I know that Galvis didn't create a positive first impression this season, but unless he's part of a trade package he should make the team again next spring. Considering the Phillies' heavy payroll obligations and his existing potential, a chance at baseball redemption is probably what he really needs.
Sean O'Brien is based in the Philadelphia region. He began his professional career in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons' front office (the Philadelphia Phillies former Triple-A affiliate), later worked as a freelance sports writer and is currently a Featured Contributor in Sports for the Yahoo Contributor Network! You can follow him on Twitter @SeanyOB and also read his daily Sports Blog: Insight.
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