Philadelphia Phillies: When Chase Utley Returns, What Will Galvis' Role Be?

Drew MillerContributor IIMay 29, 2012

Freddy Galvis has become a fan favorite in Philadelphia with his spectacular defense and timely hits.
Freddy Galvis has become a fan favorite in Philadelphia with his spectacular defense and timely hits.Drew Hallowell/Getty Images

With an injury depleted team, the Philadelphia Phillies have had one very pleasant surprise early this season, rookie Freddy Galvis. When Galvis was moved to second base following Chase Utley's injury, many criticized the move.

His defense has been spectacular, but that was never the main question. He was said to be a quadruple-A player: too developed for the minors but not ready for major league pitching.

Some of the concerns with Galvis such as his plate discipline have shown. He is hitting .236 with only six walks. What has been unexpected is the "pop" in his bat. Galvis leads the Phillies in doubles with 13, and is fourth on the team with 23 RBI.

Now, when Chase Utley returns from the DL, where does Galvis fit into the Phillies lineup?

Just by looking at the early season stats, it would be easy to say Galvis should start at shortstop over Jimmy Rollins.

However, there are 33 million reasons why that won't happen.

Galvis leads Rollins in every hitting category besides walks, hits and OBP. Jimmy's stats may also be deceiving because of his 192 AB to Galvis' 165.

Galvis' defense and recently discovered power is too valuable to the Phillies lineup to keep him on the bench. Rollins will be the starting shortstop, but with his age he cannot play everyday. His range decreases with age, as Galvis' will only increase as he matures.

Charlie Manuel has no choice but to keep him in the lineup consistently, especially with the love he has endured from the Philly Phaithful. It takes many years for some players to win over the hard-nosed Philadelphia fans. Galvis has managed to become a fan favorite in just a quarter of a season. Alongside the usual "Chooch" chants, "Freddy" has became a very popular chant at Citizens Bank Park.

Galvis will be an essential backup, spelling both Utley and Rollins, both of whom are not fit for playing everyday. As the season progresses, Galvis will mature as a player and continue to see the field.