CLEARWATER, Fla. — It is unfair to judge Darin Ruf after four games in left field. They all came before the calendar turned to March. Ruf, the former first baseman, also dealt with arm soreness from the new throwing drills required of the outfielders.
As Charlie Manuel said, Ruf will make mistakes. Well, on Friday, he will not have that chance.
Ruf is back to designated hitter in Manuel's lineup. Domonic Brown moves to left and John Mayberry Jr. is inserted into right field.
Manuel says defense is a priority. Ruf can change that equation by hitting his way onto the team despite a shaky glove. He will have that opportunity this spring.
But Mayberry has his pluses, too. He is probably not an everyday player; he had that shot last season. He does hit well against lefthanders. Friday, he will face righty Hiroki Kuroda.
Here is your daily skinny on the day's Grapefruit League action...
1. Jimmy Rollins 6
2. Ben Revere 8
3. Chase Utley 4
4. Ryan Howard 3
5. Michael Young 5
6. Domonic Brown 7
7. Darin Ruf 0
8. John Mayberry Jr. 9
9. Steven Lerud 2
Pitchers: Roy Halladay, Rodrigo Lopez, Jonathan Papelbon, Phillippe Aumont and Raul Valdes
First pitch: 1:05 p.m.
Saturday: Phillies at Blue Jays (Cliff Lee vs. R.A. Dickey), in Dunedin, 1:05 p.m.
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