Many fans are intrigued by the possibilities of what Darin Ruf could bring to the 2013 Phillies.
Virtually an unknown prior to his breakout 2012 season, Ruf took the Eastern League by storm, bashing 38 home runs and driving in 105 runs. With the Phillies lacking for a right-handed power bat ever since Jayson Werth left for D.C. millions, Ruf’s presence could change the entire dynamic of their lineup
In a brief September audition with the Phillies, he did not disappoint. Despite getting only 33 at-bats Ruf showed the type of power and poise he demonstrated in Reading, and gave fans something to be excited about after a lackluster season.
With Ryan Howard and his massive contract entrenched at first base for the foreseeable future, Ruf is spending his offseason learning to play the outfield If he’s successful, the Phillies may have found their left fielder for the next several seasons.
However, regardless of how well he learns to play the outfield or what type of potential Ruf brings, the chances of the Phillies making him their opening day left fielder next season are miniscule. It might not be the right choice—he’s already 26 years old and has shown he can dominate minor league pitching—but it’s unlikely he will be anywhere other than Lehigh Valley next April.