Ruiz has gone 11-for-37 (.297 average) at the plate with two home runs, three doubles and one steal through his 15 Grapefruit League appearances entering play Monday.
In addition to making the most of the contact he's made this spring, Ruiz has shown excellent plate discipline, drawing six walks against eight strikeouts to keep his on-base average at an even .400. The strong performance at the dish has not only put Ruiz in contention for an Opening Day roster spot, but he could even beat out a banged-up Renato Nunez (arm) for the top job at third base. For now, Ruiz is just a name to keep an eye in AL-only formats and the deepest of mixed leagues.
Ruiz appeared in 72 games for the Braves over the last three seasons, hitting just .189/.282/.302. His .264/.333/.409 line in three seasons at the Triple-A level suggests the potential for at least competent performance, but as a player who is limited to the corners defensively, his ceiling is quite low. He now finds himself in an organization which lacks established players all around the diamond, but it would be a surprise to see him break out and become a real asset in 2019.
Ruiz was optioned to Triple-A Gwinnett on Thursday, Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports.
Ruiz was sent to the minors to free up a roster spot for Lucas Duda, who was acquired from the Royals via trade Wednesday. With rosters set to expand Saturday, the 24-year-old should be back in the majors as a bench bat when first eligible.
He'll be available off the bench for the series finale in Miami, assuming the active roster spot of catcher Chris Stewart, who was designated for assignment. The 24-year-old third baseman has seen action with the big club in both of the past two seasons, slashing .197/.283/.318 across 180 plate appearances, but this will mark his first callup of 2018. Ruiz will likely play only a bit role off the bench over the final few weeks of the season as the Braves look to solidify a playoff spot.
Ruiz was optioned to Triple-A Gwinnett on Wednesday.
Ruiz just missed out on an Opening Day roster spot and will head back to the Triple-A level for the beginning of the 2018 campaign. Last season, he wound up playing in 53 games for the Braves, but hit just .193 with four home runs and 19 RBI in 173 plate appearances. Since Ruiz has the ability to play multiple positions in the field, he could find himself back at the major-league level in due time, though it's unlikely that he will make much of a fantasy impact either way.
|10/8/2018 vs Los Angeles|
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|Minor League Batting Stats|
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