Ruben Amaro, Jr. wasn't pleased when he learned that Carlos Ruiz was going to serve a 25-game suspension to start the season. However, he has clearly hit his way back into the Philadelphia Phillies' good graces during the past two months.
Understandable speculation pegged Ruiz as a goner after this season. Then, after the suspension had been served he suffered a hamstring strain. Both issues caused number 51's swing to be well behind major league pitching until after a few weeks after the All-Star game had been played.
But, as August played out 'Chooch' simply began pounding the ball. The now noticeably svelte veteran backstop resembled the clutch playoff puncher fall ball fans had seen during the Phillies five-year postseason run.
Ruiz wasn't a productive regular season hitter during the first half of his career. Whether Adderall enabled him to retain his strength in past seasons is something that no one will ever be able to truly confirm.
With that ever-steady defensive presence still alive and his worthwhile right-handed bat needed in the 2014 lineup, it makes sense that Amaro wants Ruiz to remain the Phillies' primary receiver past this season. Yes, this mid-30's catcher has surprised everyone one more time by proving that he's still a two-way man.