Even when he’s no longer with the Philadelphia Phillies, Carlos Ruiz manages to maintain a place in our hearts
Phillies fans were heart broken when Carlos “Chooch” Ruiz was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a pair of prospects and veteran A.J. Ellis. Chooch was the quiet leader of the pitching staff, and an undervalued reason the Phillies won a World Series.
To thank the fans who supported him during his 11 years in the City of Brotherly Love, Chooch tugged at our heartstrings with a billboard on the PA turnpike.
Matt Gelb (against all safety logic) was able to get an excellent picture of the billboard and tweet it out. Don’t snap and drive, kids.
Chooch played over 1,000 games behind the plate for the Phillies. Among active catchers Ruiz has the second-highest defensive war. He caught over 7,000 strikeouts in his Philadelphia career, and his pitchers have an above-average 3.92 ERA with him behind the plate.
Ruiz’s bat hasn’t translated to Los Angeles since the August 25 trade. He’s hitting .154 in six games with two hits, two walks, and four strikeouts. Chooch was never really known for his bat, hitting .265 during his tenure in Philadelphia, and was brought in mostly for his post-season experience.
It will only be a matter of time until Carlos Ruiz’s smile is bronzed and hanging in the Phillies Wall of Fame. Hopefully Roy Halladay and Brad Lidge’s plaques will be close by.