Washington Nationals: Ranking the Shortstops of the NL East

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Oct 13, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals center fielder Trea Turner (7) follows through on a swing for a single during the third inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game five of the 2016 NLDS playoff baseball game at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 13, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals center fielder Trea Turner (7) follows through on a swing for a single during the third inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game five of the 2016 NLDS playoff baseball game at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /
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Sep 13, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis (13) hits an RBI sacrifice fly during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citizens Bank Park. The Pittsburgh Pirates won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 13, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis (13) hits an RBI sacrifice fly during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citizens Bank Park. The Pittsburgh Pirates won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

4) Freddy Galvis – Philadelphia Phillies

Freddy Galvis of the Philadelphia Phillies comes in at four on the list of NL East short stops – moving up from his fifth place ranking in 2016. However, contrary to past seasons, this ranking is more of a reflection of the quality competition at shortstop than a statement on his performance last season.

Galvis’s 2016 campaign was somewhat of a head-scratcher (but in a good way for the Phillies), particularly at the plate. His slash line for last year was .241/.274/.399, which is pretty much in line with his typical career performance. However, Galvis put up a surprising 20 home runs, which matches his career total for home runs through the 2015 season. He also put up career high 17 stolen bases, 26 doubles, and 67 RBI on 141 hits.

Fielding-wise, Galvis was a Gold Glove finalist and came in at +5 defensive runs saved for 2016. This is an amazing turnaround from the previous season when he had a -6 defensive runs saved.

In 156 games at shortstop for the Phillies, Galvis had eight errors–one more than New York’s Asdrubal Cabrera–but a better average in this category overall considering that Galvis played in 21 more games at the position than Cabrera. This is yet another surprising shift from 2015 when Galvis had 17 errors at shortstop.

The big question for Galvis heading into 2017 (and for these rankings for that matter) is if 2016 was an anomaly, or an across the board improvement that is the new norm for the Phillies shortstop. With baseball being a game of averages, odds are that we can expect Galvis to perform more to his norms on offense and defense in 2017.

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