We're hoping that the real Freddy Galvis will stand up in 2017, and we're hoping that he looks a lot like the one that hit a career-high 20 home runs for the Phillies last season. After being considered more of a defensive whiz than any sort of offensive threat, Galvis had a big season at the plate last year that helped his case and pushed his salary to more than double his paycheck for 2016, when he signed a deal that will reportedly pay him $4.35-million this coming season.
With Galvis signed, his double-play partner, Cesar Hernandez and closer Jeanmar Gomez remain the only two Phillies players still on a course to end in arbitration. Teams and players have until Friday to submit figures for their arbitration hearings, but reports out of Philadelphia are that both players could be signed to new deals prior to salary numbers even being submitted.
Galvis has been the Phillies starting shortstop in each of the past two seasons and played in a career-high 158 games for the Phillies in 2017. He also set career-highs in home runs (20), RBI (67) and OPS (.673), while hitting .241, which is exactly his career average in the majors. The 20 home runs equaled the number he had hit in 322 career games coming into the season.
Ironically, even with the career-best numbers, Galvis' spot in the lineup is anything but guaranteed. One of the Phillies top prospects, J.P. Crawford, just happens to be a shortstop and will be pushing his way on to the major league roster before too long as he heads into his first full season with Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Crawford's pending arrival - he was given an invitation to Spring Training just the other day - could push Galvis over to second base, bumping Hernandez out of the lineup, or it could mean that Galvis will become a utility player for the club, since he can play at all four infield positions and can play in the outfield, if needed.
There was some talk at the Winter Meetings that Hernandez could be dealt, and that scenario could also be revisited by the Phillies down the road, as a way to clear a spot for Crawford to play every day in the majors.
Freddy Galvis' career stats