Originally written on Phillies Nation  |  Last updated 11/18/14
With Chase Utley on the disabled list and Ryan Howard on the precipice of injury with his hurting left knee, there has been an outcry from some fans for the Phillies to call up. To some, the Ruthian-type hero from last year who blasted 20 home runs in one month, and 51 between three leagues is the obvious choice for a team which so desperately needs an offensive boost. But to others, his recent 0-for-21 slump warrants some more minor league seasoning before joining the Phils. In talking with Ruf today at Lehigh Valley, it was clearly evident that he, nor anyone else is particularly worried about his recent skid. He does not feel like it is a mechanical issue, pressure to perform, or a lack of confidence at the plate. In fact, Ruf is extremely sure in his abilities and makes absolutely nothing of his struggles of late. To him, it is just the natural ebb and flow of the game. Here is some of what he had to say about dealing with his slump: “Everybody struggles in baseball at some point. In a six-month season you’re going to go 0-for-20, 0-for-30- that just happens. You just have to shorten [the slumps] and try to get into a rhythm as quickly as possible.” If Ruf will get everyday playing time, it makes sense to call him up. Photo by: Ian Riccaboni “You just have to stay positive and just have to keep working and doing the same things day in and day out that you have been doing all year and the things that have made you successful in the past, and try to get back to that…A key hit or something like that could trigger prolonged success, but more so just maintaining your routine and not straying from the stuff you are doing.” In baseball, if you are not getting better you are getting worse. You have to put what happened in the past behind you and try to get better, try to work hard every day to ultimately get to the big leagues and help the team win there.” He said a lot more, such as squaring up balls and not being worried about power numbers, but this was the parts I wanted to get at. What does all this mean? It means that he needs to keep getting out there, playing every day and getting at bats to work his way out of his rough patch. He thinks if he can get out there and find a routine and stay consistent with his approach he can heat up at any time. And he really could, it could happen in the blink of an eye. Remember, Ruf hit .262 last July and had some 0-fers, which is not terribly better than his .256 average this May. But remember what happened once July 2012 came to an end? he hit .370 with 20 homers and 36 RBI in August. The point is, is Ruf will be an every day player with the Phillies and get at bats consistently, it makes sense to have him up there. It may not be so much where he is playing as much as making sure he is playing to help him break out this year. However, if he is going to only start once in a while and have to have his only at bats be late in games, perhaps in tough situations against tough relievers, it might not do him or the Phillies any good. And while Howard is playing, there really is no spot for him to start every day. It would be tough to use him in left, because then you have two sub-par, slower outfielders at the corners, and Domonic Brown in center (where he struggled mightily in LHV last year). Keep Ruf in Lehigh Valley…for now. Once he starts swinging a hot bat, give him a shot. Especially if Howard needs to miss any chunk of time or if (when?) Delmon Young continues to be as unimpressive both offensively and defensively as he has been.    
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Adrian Peterson will skip Vikings first OTAs

Corey Brewer: We got our butt kicked, it was embarrassing

Brian Kelly hints Notre Dame will have fast offense

John Madden: Last play of Super Bowl will 'torment' Pete Carroll

Cristiano Ronaldo nets hat trick, sets career high for goals


WATCH: Cormier tells Jones to get his s-- together

Fans holding 'Free Tom Brady Rally' at Gillette Stadium

Josh Hamilton to be activated by Rangers

WATCH: Top CB recruit makes insane catch doing backflip

Biggest surprises of the MLB season

Marcus Mariota leads NFL in jersey sales for May

Federer unhappy with security after fan comes on court

WATCH: LeBron throws down ferocious dunk in traffic

WATCH: Al Horford ejected for elbowing Matthew Dellavedova

Seahawks fan starts GoFundMe for Russell Wilson's contract

Billy Donovan thanks Florida fans with full-page ad

WATCH: Daniel Cormier gets into it with Ryan Bader

Jim Harbaugh compares his driving to Jeff Gordon's

WATCH: High school seals win with perfect hidden ball trick

Warriors crush Rockets in Houston to take 3-0 series lead

WATCH: D'Angelo Russell whiffs on horrible golf swing

Brian Matusz ejected for having foreign substance on arm

PHOTO: Don Cherry wears wild suit even for his taste

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: LeBron's ferocious dunk in traffic

Kelly drops hint about ND offense

John Madden: Last SB play will 'torment' Carroll

Eight biggest surprises of the MLB season

Bryan Price ejected before first pitch

Vin Scully narrates marriage proposal

Pats fan's obituary defends Brady

Marlins players skip own charity event

John Wall tells All-NBA Team voters to ‘keep sleeping’

Jim Kelly: No doubt Tom Brady cheated

Post-combine NBA Draft big board: Top 30

Ex-players sue NFL for conspiring to push painkillers

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.