Today the Phillies placed backup catcher Brian Schneider on the 15-day disabled list. What do you do when your backup goes down and the guy he is backing up is also down? Good thing the Phillies are out of it.
Steven Lerud was the best they could do. Lerud was the best they could do given the circumstances. You may remember Lerud from a few Spring Training games. The Phillies probably would have preferred the other Spring Training catcher Tuffy Gosewich, but he was shipped to Toronto in a trade for pretty much nothing after the Phillies traded for Tommy Joseph in the Hunter Pence trade and needed a roster space and playing time. Sebastian Valle was then promoted to AAA Lehigh Valley after the trade, but he is far from ready.
Worried about catching depth after the trade, the Phillies acquired Jake Fox. But Fox is buried at AA Reading and playing the infield. He may catch now, but only because Lerud is now on the big club.
Lerud was hitting just .235 as a backup at AA Reading. But he will have to do for now. Phillies fan favorite Erik Kratz is hitting a lusty .319 in a small sample size and will catch most of the time.
If the Phillies were winners, they might get a catcher. But, they are not so thy will do what they can with what they have.
For Schneider, this could be the end. The team's backup for three seasons, the injury-prone Lehigh Valley native may not get an offer to return. If Kratz shows he has something, the job could be his.
Steven Lerud, enjoy this cup of coffee you will get.