The Phillies welcome another new face as they get set for their series with Washington.
The Phils have once again lost Brian Schneider to the disabled list, and with Carlos Ruiz lost to injury, and Sebastian Valle just getting his feet wet at Triple-A, out of necessity more than anything, the Phils have purchased the contract of one Double-A catcher Steven Larud, 27, who was a non-roster invitee with the Phils this spring. Larud, a career minor leaguer who was a third round pick of the Pirates in 2003, has appeared in just 35 games with Reading this season, hitting .235/.350/.304 in 120 plate appearances (lot of walks, pretty decent on base, whatever, this guy's not going to play). Recall the Phillies, volunterily, depleted their "ready" catching depth right before the trade deadline when they gave Tuffy Gosewisch to the Blue Jays for nothing. Gosewisch, an organizational good soldier, was a spring training staple and good handler. And recall that the Phillies signed veteran Jake Fox out of the independent leagues after Chooch wen to the disabled list, but appearantly, he wasn't an option here.
Needless to say, the catching situation is grim indeed. Good thing there's nothing riding on these last 37 games. Enter the Washington Nationals, owner of a 19.5-game edge over Larud and the Phillies.