While the focus in free agency has been at the top of the shortstop market, there are some solid players in the middle tier. Former Philadelphia Phillies infielder Freddy Galvis had been amongst that group, a solid if unspectacular player capable of playing either middle infield position. For a team that either missed out on one of those top shortstops, or was looking for depth in the middle of their infield, he would have been a solid option.
That will no longer be the case. According to reports, Galvis is on the verge of signing with the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks in Nippon Professional Baseball.
Former Philadelphia Phillies infielder Freddie Galvis heading to Japan
While Galvis is not going to be the type of player that can fundamentally change a lineup, he has been a decent enough hitter with solid pop. He produced a .242/.302/.407 batting line in his 394 plate appearances between the Orioles and Phillies, hitting 14 homers and 15 doubles despite missing nearly two months with a strained right quad.
By heading to Japan, Galvis is avoiding the entire mess created by the lockout and finding security. If the labor stoppage lasts into February or March, there is likely to be a rush of players signing for the best contract possible. That could lead to players signing contracts for less than they normally would.
It will be interesting to see what the terms of Galvis’ contract with the Hawks are. Should he sign a one year deal, he would hypothetically be able to return to the majors next year, re-entering the market at a time when the caliber of shortstops will not be as high.
Galvis may also be able to improve his earning potential with his time in Japan. Should he hit for more power with the Hawks, while improving his overall batting line, he could be in line for a multi-year deal stateside. Signing with the Hawks may be a bit of a gamble, but it is one that could pay off down the line.
Former Philadelphia Phillies infielder Freddy Galvis is heading to Japan. He is reportedly on the verge of signing with the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks.