Galvis Looking To Answer Offensive Questions

Phillies glove man showing signs of improvement at the plate





PHILADELPHIA—There has never been much doubt that Freddy Galvis could play defense in the major leagues if given the opportunity. The question has always been whether the slightly built shortstop will hit enough to get there.

Phillies officials challenged Galvis with a move to Triple-A in early August, and the 21-year-old switch-hitter had responded, hitting .315/.330/.370 in his first 25 games.

"It's a small sample size," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said, "but he's not overmatched and that's a good sign. Freddy has had a really nice year. His body has gotten stronger and he's improved offensively. (Assistant GM) Chuck LaMar made a good move getting him to Triple-A and it has worked out well."

Signed as a 16-year-old out of Venezuela in 2006, Galvis got to Double-A Reading at 19. He hit .233/.276/.311 there last season, and raised that to .273/.326/.400 this year, with 22 doubles, four triples and eight homers.

Phillies officials have noticed that Galvis is hitting balls harder. The 5-foot-10, 170-pounder attributed that to improved strength training in the offseason.

"Strength-wise, he's able to do things better," Reading manager Mark Parent said. "Physically, he's a more mature player. He's not getting tired as the season goes on. He's able to be more consistent. He figured out you don't just get ready for the season and stop. You keep going."

Galvis has long been mentioned as a possible successor to shortstop Jimmy Rollins, though he's not ready for the job yet. He had 985 Double-A at-bats and could spend a similar amount of time at Triple-A.

PHIL-UPS

• The Phillies signed 16-year-old Venezuelan outfielder Carlos Tocci for $759,000. It's the second-largest signing bonus the team has given in Latin America. Cuban outfielder Josue Perez got $850,000 in 1999.

• Lefty Jesse Biddle, the team's first-round pick in 2010, had a 1.75 ERA in his first 10 starts after the all-star break for low Class A Lakewood.