Manuel expects Ruf to shed slow start

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Phillies outfielder Darin Ruf had another tough day.

He went 0-for-4 against the Dominican Republic in a 15-2 loss on Tuesday at Bright House Field. He also could not get to a ball Miguel Tejada hit to left-center field for a ground-rule double in the third inning. The ball appeared catchable.

Ruf is hitting .111 (3-for-27) with one double, three RBIs, two walks and nine strikeouts in nine games, including Tuesday's exhibition contest, which does not figure into the official Grapefruit League statistics.

"It looks like he didn't get no hits," said Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, when asked what Ruf looked like at the plate. "Right now, things aren't going good for Ruf. He'll be all right. Ruf isn't the only guy to ever come to Spring Training and get off to a slow start. It happens every spring. He'll be fine. He is going to get some more hits. He's not going to go all of his life with collars."

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.