8/15/2014 10:20 P.M. ET
Phillies trying to determine Ruf's ceiling
By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com
SAN FRANCISCO -- Darin Ruf found himself back in the Phillies lineup Friday against Giants left-hander Madison Bumgarner.
Ruf, who started in left field, has been in lineup purgatory lately. The Phillies say the need to see more of Ruf, but he hasn't played much as the organization says it is trying to win as many games as possible. So how do the Phillies look at Ruf? What exactly is Ruf's ceiling as a player?
"That's all part of the question mark," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. "It's really hard to tell. He hasn't had a chance to do it every day. He hasn't had a chance for 600 at-bats, to play a position. He's been a little bit puzzling -- and that's some of the reason to give him at-bats against lefties -- to see if that could be something like being a big bat against a left-handed pitcher. That's a spot on the team, a pinch-hitter like that."
Phillies could have interest in retaining Sizemore
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Phillies signed Grady Sizemore to a Minor League contract June 24, when they stood a more palatable six games under .500.
Entering Friday, he had hit .309 with seven doubles, one triple, one home run, seven RBIs and a .786 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) in 27 games since he joined the big league team in July. He has played well, maybe better than expected since the Red Sox released him in June, when he had a .612 OPS in 52 games.
But does he have a future in the organization? Sizemore is 32 with multiple injuries on his medical report. He also is a free agent after the season. If he continues to play well, would the Phillies invest in him? He has outperformed Domonic Brown (.615 OPS) and Ben Revere (.692 OPS) to this point, but does the front office view him as a part of a retooling or rebuilding effort?
"Yeah, very possible," Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said recently. "He's played well enough to certainly be in consideration for 2015 and beyond. But again that's one of those questions we'll continue to assess. What we do with our outfield will be one of those questions, and he could very well be a part of it."
Of course, Sizemore could be traded before the Aug. 31 waiver Trade Deadline. He might not bring much in return, but he could net the Phillies a prospect of some stature in their retooling efforts for next season and beyond.
Mayberry still dealing with sore left wrist
SAN FRANCISCO -- Phillies outfielder John Mayberry Jr. is getting a little closer to rejoining the team.
He has been on the 15-day disabled list since July 21 with inflammation in his left wrist. But Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg also said Mayberry "keeps getting slowed up a little bit" following his workouts.
"Kind of a holding pattern," he said. "It's a tolerance thing. But at some point he'll get two or three or four games [in the Minor Leagues] whenever he feels like he gets to that point."
There is no rush with a crowded outfield that includes Marlon Byrd, Ben Revere, Grady Sizemore, Domonic Brown and Darin Ruf. Rosters expand Sept. 1.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.