CLEARWATER, Fla. - Freddy Galvis will not be on the roster when the Phillies begin the season in Texas a week from Monday. But Galvis has a more serious issue to deal with that pales in comparison to his availability for Opening Day.
Galvis has a MRSA infection, a source told the Daily News on Friday afternoon. Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. confirmed the diagnosis following the Phillies 2-2 tie with the Red Sox in exhibition play.
Galvis was hospitalized Thursday night and will start the regular season on the disabled list.
"Right now, we're more concerned with his overall health more than anything else," Amaro said. "He's going to be in the hospital for a little bit, I don't know how long.. ... We do not have any time frame because of the severity of what the MRSA is. ... Hopefully the infection gets out of his body as quickly as possible."
Earler Friday, the team announced that Galvis had been hospitalized with a staph infection after undergoing a procedure to have an abscess removed from his left knee. Galvis underwent that surgery on Thursday.
Galvis originally suffered the cut while sliding into third base earlier this month. He had been held out of each of the Phillies last three games this week.
Speaking outside Bright House Field prior to Friday's exhibition game against the Boston Red Sox, Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said the infection "could end up being MRSA," but that Galvis was undergoing tests. But at that time, Galvis has already been treated for MRSA, according to a source.
Galvis has been taking antibiotics both orally and through an IV. He is said to be be doing better.
The infection strain known as MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, became close to a household word last fall in Philadelphia when three members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were diagnosed with the infection in the week prior to their Oct. 13 game against the Eagles. Despite rumors that the game could be pushed back because of the outbreak, the Eagles beat the Buccaneers 31-20 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.
According to a New York Times story, the Buccaneers worked with Dr. Deverick J. Anderson, co-director of the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network, "to identify the infections and review protocols for preventing them."
"The reality is we all get exposed to MRSA pretty regularly, but because we have intact skin, we don't run into any problems with it," Anderson told the Times.
Anderson spoke at a press conference the day before the Eagles-Bucs game last fall and said the Bucs' stadium and facility were "a safe environment for players and staff."
Amaro faced similar questions on Friday afternoon. He said the Phillies were having the home clubhouse at Bright House Field bombed with disinfectant following Friday's game against the Red Sox.
"(We'll) bomb it up pretty good and try to clear that," Amaro said. "Obviously it is a bit of a concern. We'll take the proper precautions. Unfortunately when you're in a clubhouse with 60-plus people or whatever it was, this kind of stuff can happen. If you see everyone's locker, every single guy has that disinfectant stuff. It's stuff that happens. You can't do much about it be causes trying to prevent anything else from happening."
MRSA, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, is a bacteria that is resistant to antibiotics, most often a result from skin infections. But in medical facilities, according to the CDC, MRSA can causes "life-threatening bloodstream infections, pneumonia and surgical site infections."