Freddy Galvis is hot
Since the Reds picked him up off waivers 13 games and 50 plate appearances ago, Galvis is slashing .404/.420/.702 with an OPS of 1.122 (you can thank some “Punisher” guy for not allowing you the highest OPS on the team, Freddy).
Sure, that’s a small sample size, but Galvis’ success goes beyond the current 13 game vacuum. In each of his last two seasons Freddy Galvis has posted a WAR of 2.3 or more. One of the biggest appeals of Galvis is his ability to hit for power – hitting 22 home runs in 2018 and well on his way to eclipsing that with 22 already this season. Compare that to a guy like Jose Iglesias (who has 30 home runs in 8 years), and you can understand why Freddy Galvis is raising some eyebrows (mine are fully, fully raised). The 29 year old middle infielder is coming off the best statistical season of his career in 2018 and is about to significantly top it in 2019.
This article wasn’t written to be a comparison between Freddy Galvis and Jose Iglesias. Based on their contract status’ (Galvis signed through 2020 and Iglesias a free agent at year end) and their overall ability to play the game of baseball, the choice is pretty clear. If you had to pick between the two, Galvis is simply the better option and player going forward.
The question then becomes this: Is Freddy Galvis THE best option going forward? Would you be happy with him as an Opening Day starting middle infielder in 2020?
The answer for me is…maybe (weak answer, I know).
Run production and offense is an obvious need for the Reds heading into next season. The front office should be completely open to upgrading the team wherever they can. Freddy Galvis is a decent middle infield piece, but that shouldn’t stop the Reds from exploring an even better option.
The beauty of the Galvis signing is that it gives the Reds flexibility. With Jose Iglesias becoming a free agent at the end of this year – the Reds have essentially already replaced him going into next year. They aren’t tied down with trying to find middle infield help in the off-season. The Reds can open up their options to improve the roster elsewhere (which they WILL need to do) in order to further compete in 2020. If that happens, only then will I be satisfied with Galvis as a starting middle infielder next year.
That being said – if the opportunity to improve the team next year presents itself as middle infield help (via trade of free agency), then by all means the Reds should be open to it. Further improving the middle infield is another path the Reds could take to becoming even more competitive in 2020.
When it comes down to it, I think (and the Reds front office probably already knows) that Freddy Galvis will be a significant player on this team next year. That satisfies me if some other position on the team is significantly better than the 2019 version of itself. The Freddy Galvis signing gives the Reds the opportunity to do just that.