The Philadelphia Phillies have added Placido Polanco to the 15-day disabled list again and activated star catcher Carlos Ruiz from the disabled list, where he has been for six weeks.
Polanco has become almost a fixture on the DL this season, as he’s now out for the third time. This could spell the end of his tenure in Philly, as he’s in the final season of a three-year contract that expires after the 2012 season. There is a $5.5 mutual option for the 2013 season but it’s extremely unlikely that the team will pick that up considering the way he’s performed at the plate recently.
Polanco is batting just .257 with a .629 OPS that largely suggests he should be nothing more than a utility infielder and defensive replacement. And he still has some serious value as a defensive replacement, as Polanco is an absolute whiz in the field. He can play second base and third base like a pro, and he owns the highest career fielding percentage in the league’s history at each position.
Ruiz is batting .335 with 14 home runs and 58 RBIs and his .959 OPS ranks sixth-highest in the game among players with at least 350 plate appearances. Ruiz is in the final season of a three-year, $8.85 million deal but there’s a $5 million team option for 2013 that the Phillies will absolutely pick up.
In Ruiz’s place, the Phillies have been extremely fortunate with the strong play from backup Erik Kratz, who is hitting .277/.323/.589 with nine home runs and 24 RBIs in 124 plate appearances, and a .912 OPS that rates 17th-best in the game for all players with a minimum of 100 plate appearances. That’s not bad for a player who has spent the majority of his professional career at the Triple-A level fighting for an opportunity to play in the majors.