Found July 06, 2012 on Philly Sports World:
Injured star 1st baseman, Ryan Howard will make his return to the Phillies tonight against the Braves.

Injured star 1st baseman, Ryan Howard will make his return to the Phillies tonight against the Braves.

After a crushing walk-off loss to the New York Mets last night, it appears the Phillies are desperate. Even though he has only spent a week rehabbing in minor league baseball games, Ryan Howard is reportedly going to be activated tonight as the Phillies open a 3 game series against the Braves at Citizens Bank Park.

Howard has had a successful, albeit brief rehab stint in Single A Lakewood and Triple A Lehigh Valley. With the train really beginning to come off of the tracks for the Phillies, it seems like a good time to get Ryan Howard back in the lineup.

“I think he’s ready.” Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. said after last night’s loss. And with that, Howard, who was supposed to come back some time after the All Star break is set to make his return to the club.

Without Ryan Howard, the Phillies have lacked a run producer in the cleanup spot. Carlos Ruiz, in the midst of a career year, has done a solid job batting clean up for the Phillies, but it’s clear that he is not the long term answer there.

As the trade deadline approaches, the Phillies only likely have a couple of weeks to try to get the ship righted before Amaro could be forced into making some moves. It’s usually better to make those moves knowing what your full team is going to look like. This will at least give the team and Amaro a couple of weeks of seeing how it will all come together.

“He’s had a little hitch in his giddy-up, but when he’s running full speed he looks pretty smooth.” Amaro said of Howard. Clearly Howard is not 100% after suffering a ruptured Achilles’ tendon and then having a setback with an infection on the surgical wound in February.

Ryan Howard at less than 100% still may be the best option this team has now. I just hope it’s not too soon.

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