In a trade with the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Phillies received infielder Randy Ruiz for no compensation. They also singed right-hander Chris Rojas, who had been pitching in the independent leagues. Both players were previously with the organization.
Ruiz hits like crazy, but has been suspended numerous times for violating baseball’s substance abuse policy. In 2005 with Reading, the 29-year-old New Yorker was on pace to win the Eastern League triple crown until his suspension. He was hitting .349 with 27 homers and 89 RBIs in only 344 at bats. The Phillies didn’t keep him, and neither did the Yankees, Royals or Pirates, the teams that had him in the time since. With Double-A Altoona, Ruiz was hitting .290 with 7 homers and 30 RBIs (.850 OPS).
Chris Rojas was also in Reading during the summer of 2005. In nine minor league seasons, the 30-year-old right-hander is 48-47 with a 4.38 ERA.
Beerleaguer: These latest moves expose the team's state of minor league disarray. They’ll take anything just to adequately fill out a roster, no matter how old, damaged or hopeless. From Clearwater through Ottawa, the rosters are absolutely jammed with independent retreads and has-beens. They're signing them almost daily now. It’s an embarrassment.