There has long been talk of the Phillies platooning first baseman Ryan Howard with a right-handed hitter, such as Darin Ruf. Howard has taken umbrage at the suggestion, citing his performance against southpaws in 2014. But Howard has, by and large, been a free out when a lefty is on the mound.
It looks like the Phillies are now finally using an official platoon, Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Manager Pete Mackanin told Howard, “It’s in your best interests.” Howard wasn’t happy with the decision but understood.
Ruf, 29, has crushed left-handed pitching in his career, owning a .946 OPS against them. Howard, since, 2012, has a .613 OPS against lefties.