CLEARWATER, Fla. — The Phillies lost two bench players in two days to injury. They do not know how much time Darin Ruf will miss with a strained muscle in his rib cage. The same can be said for Freddy Galvis, who was hospitalized with a staph infection stemming from an abscess removal.
Such injuries are usually treated with conservatism. Their absences crystallize the roster picture with less than a week until the Phillies break camp
Our first roster prediction was made 11 days ago. Please read the caveats noted there. Here is the newest:
Ruiz is one of the few players who has hit with consistency this spring. The staff likes how Nieves has handled a new group of pitchers.
Cedeno, 31, earns the nod over Reid Brignac to replace Galvis because of his 602 career major-league starts at shortstop. He can moonlight at second or third base (where is starting Friday). But Brignac, 28, has crushed the ball this spring and could win the job with a late push. (He has 156 career starts at shortstop.)
Cedeno was limited earlier in the spring by a bad back. If Cedeno is not added to the 25-man roster by Tuesday, he can ask for his release or be paid a $100,000 bonus to go to triple A.
John Mayberry Jr.
Tony Gwynn Jr.
Abreu's bat has shown life in recent games. He is not the most nimble in right field (no 40-year-old man is) but the Phillies will keep him for his lefthanded pinch-hitting abilities. Ruf's murky status is a win for Mayberry. Gwynn, who strikes Ryne Sandberg as an ideal National League bench player because of his speed and defense.
No changes here.
Justin De Fratus
Camp throws strikes and is all but guaranteed a spot because of that. Rosenberg, who can provide length on this 11-man staff, is a favorite of the coaches because he can fill numerous roles. The fifth starter, whether it be Jeff Manship or David Buchanan, can start the season at triple-A Lehigh Valley. Another starter is not needed until April 14.
DISABLED LIST (7)
Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez
Adams is planning for a mid-April return. Hamels is slated for May. Galvis and Ruf could be back before May. Still, it's never good to start the season with a seven-man disabled list.
Have a question? Send it to Matt Gelb's Mailbag.