Darin Ruf was hopeful as he stood by his locker on Friday morning. But he was also still sore.
Ruf had an MRI on Friday on an oblique injury that kept him out of the lineup on Thursday. The result is bad news for the composition of the Phillies bench.
Ruf suffered a Grade 1/2 left oblique strain (rib cage) and is expected to miss 4-to-6 weeks.
Ruf entered camp with hopes of making his first Opening Day roster and as late as last week manager Ryne Sandberg was impressed enough with Ruf that he considered him a candidate for his Opening Day lineup, too, as the Phils will need a DH in Texas on March 31.
But now it appears Ruf could be sidelined for the first month of the season, and perhaps longer.