Rupp impresses by displaying full repertoire

Rupp impresses by displaying full repertoire

PHOENIX -- Cameron Rupp found himself in the middle of everything on Wednesday afternoon at Chase Field.

Rupp hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the sixth inning, he made a lead-saving play at the plate in the eighth and helped Phillies closer Ken Giles navigate through a tough at-bat against D-backs star Paul Goldschmidt for a huge out in a 7-6 victory over Arizona.

"Cameron had a real nice day," interim manager Pete Mackanin said. "It's nice to see and I'm sure he feels good about himself."

Rupp's three-run homer

Rupp is hitting .230 with six doubles, one triple, four home runs, 15 RBIs and a .635 OPS in 49 games this season. But he has hit three of those home runs and tallied eight of those RBIs in six games this month.

"I'm feeling comfortable," Rupp said. "I'm getting pitches to hit that I can drive, staying within myself and trying not to do too much. I think there's more there [offensively]."

Phillies catchers entered the afternoon with a .600 OPS, which ranked 23rd out of 30 teams in baseball. Carlos Ruiz is hitting .215 with 11 doubles, two home runs, 18 RBIs and a .583 OPS in 70 games. Ruiz's OPS is 37 points lower than his career-low .620 OPS in 2008.

Ruiz is one of the three remaining players from the 2008 World Series championship team. He is signed through next season, while Rupp remains under team control. It would not be a surprise to see both players back next season.

"I can see an improvement in Rupp over the last month or so," Mackanin said. "He's not hitting for the average but he looks a little bit more dangerous now. Especially after hitting those home runs. Chooch, to me, is a better hitter than he's shown this year. We'll see. We've got a lot of games left. We'll see how everything develops."

But the Phillies have a couple of players knocking on the door. They acquired catcher Jorge Alfaro in the Cole Hamels trade with Texas. MLBPipeline.com considers Alfaro the No. 68 prospect in baseball because of his power at the plate and his cannon for an arm behind it.

Owings out at home after review

Andrew Knapp is tearing up the Eastern League, too. After being promoted from Class A Advanced Clearwater, Knapp has hit .406 with 17 doubles, two triples, six home runs, 41 RBIs and a 1.139 OPS in 35 games with Double-A Reading.

But in the meantime, the Phillies need more from Ruiz and Rupp, who made a nice swipe tag on a play at the plate in the eighth, preventing Chris Owings from scoring the tying run.

"I did everything I could to keep him from being safe," Rupp said.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.