I’ll give Philly, its fans and its media this much: for as insufferable as they can be when they’re cruising, they offset it rather appropriately with anger, recriminations and negativity when things go poorly.
You won’t hear a lot of “we got robbed” from those guys. You won’t hear a lot of “oh well, see you next season.” Things are either awesome or terrible, and it’s because the players are either invincible or dog crap. Not a lot of in between, and there’s something kind of neat about that, even if it’s a temperament most of the rest of us can’t understand.
Anyway, it leads to stuff like this column in which Dan McQuade lists a bunch of potential “solutions” he’s heard from half-crazed Phillies fans since Friday night. It also leads to this cover of this morning’s Philadelphia Daily News:
At some point over the summer I started to imagine the kind of needling stuff I’d write if and when the Phillies failed to meet expectations. Turns out I don’t really have to. You don’t needle a guy when he’s busy trying to shove a sword in his own gut.
MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reports that the Dodgers have acquired catcher Carlos Ruiz and cash from the Phillies in exchange for catcher A.J. Ellis, minor league pitcher Tommy Bergjans, and a player to be named later. It was reported on Wednesday that Ruiz and first baseman Ryan Howard both cleared waivers and that Ruiz was drawing interest from a couple of teams.
Ruiz, 37, has served as the backup catcher behind Cameron Rupp. Over 193 plate appearances, he hit .261/.368/.352. He continued to play solid defense and has always had a reputation for handling his pitchers very well. In fact, in a commercial for the video game MLB 2k11, former Phillie Roy Halladay essentially professed his love for Ruiz:
Ellis, 35, is a free agent after the season while Ruiz has a club option for the 2017 season worth $4.5 million. It seems likely that the Dodgers pick up that option and make Ruiz Grandal’s backup next year. Ellis hit a lousy .194/.285/.252 in 161 plate appearances, but the Phillies aren’t particularly concerned with his production since they’re still facilitating their rebuilding process.
Bergjans, 23, has spent the season with High-A Rancho Cucamonga. He’s posted a 4.98 ERA with a 133/29 K/BB ratio in 130 innings spanning 21 starts and three relief appearances. He went to school in Haverford, PA so the Phillies are bringing in a local guy.
Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista has been activated from the 15-day disabled list ahead of Thursday night’s game against the Angels, the club announced. Utilityman Ryan Goins has been optioned to Triple-A Buffalo to create room on the roster.
Bautista missed the minimum 15 days due to a sprained left knee. He’s battled injuries throughout the season, limiting him to just 355 plate appearances over 80 games. He’ll resume play with a .222/.349/.444 triple-slash line, 15 home runs, and 48 RBI.
Bautista is in Thursday night’s starting lineup, batting first and serving as the DH.