The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired catcher Carlos Ruiz from the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, they announced, as first reported by Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
In exchange for Ruiz, the Phillies received catcher A.J. Ellis, right-handed pitching prospect Tommy Bergjans and a player to be named later.
The Dodgers wanted an upgrade against left-handed pitching, and Ruiz certainly fits the bill. This season, Ruiz has an .830 OPS in 57 plate appearances against southpaws, with his career mark being 92 points higher than against righties.
Overall, the 37-year-old Ruiz is hitting .261/.368/.352 this season with three home runs and 12 runs batted in over 193 plate appearances. He split time at catcher this season with Cameron Rupp.
According to FanGraphs, Ruiz has been a good defensive catcher, making him pretty valuable overall. He has been worth 1.3 wins above replacement this season, per their calculations.
Ruiz will become a free agent this offseason as he finishes out a three-year, $26 million deal. It is not known whether he plans to continue his Major League career in 2017 and beyond.
For the Phillies, they will be receiving Ellis, who will be a good clubhouse presence for the team going forward. It's interesting that Los Angeles decided to trade him, as he was Clayton Kershaw's "personal" catcher. It is possible that Ruiz will fill this role going forward.
Like Ruiz, Ellis is also a free agent this offseason but has not been nearly as productive.
The 35-year-old is hitting just .194/.285/.252 this season with one home run and 13 runs batted in over 161 plate appearances. He's provided decent defense but has been worth -0.3 wins above replacement overall.
The Phillies also received the right-hander Bergjans, who was the Dodgers' 8th round pick in the 2015 MLB Draft out of Haverford College near Philadelphia.
This season, he is 3-13 with a 4.98 ERA and a 133-29 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 130 innings at Class-A Advanced. Bergjans was not listed among the Dodgers' Top-30 prospects, via MLB.com.