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Phillies CF Adam Haseley returns from leave of absence

Haseley left the Phillies a month ago for personal reasons. He was the starting center-fielder opening day but had just four hits in his first 21 at-bats. He'll play in the minors before returning.

Outfielder Adam Haseley is on his way back to the Phillies.
Outfielder Adam Haseley is on his way back to the Phillies.Read moreJose F. Moreno / File Photograph

Adam Haseley returned to the Phillies Friday, a month after he took a leave of absence for personal reasons.

The center fielder is training at the team’s complex in Clearwater, Fla. before likely being assigned to triple-A Lehigh Valley. The Phillies have 30 days to activate him from the restricted list. Until then, Haseley does not count against the 40-man roster.

“Obviously, he’s been off for a while so he’s going to have to get his body back into playing shape,” manager Joe Girardi said before Friday’s series opener in Dunedin, Fla. against the Toronto Blue Jays. “We’re happy he’s back and he’s rearing to go.”

Haseley, the eighth-overall pick in 2017, opened the season as the starter in center but had just four hits in his first 21 at-bats before leaving the team on April 14. Girardi spoke to Haseley earlier this week after the 25-year-old informed the Phillies that he was returning.

“He sounded great,” Girardi said. “He wants to get going and we look forward to him getting going.”

Haseley hit .278 last season with a .690 OPS and entered spring training in a competition to start the season in center. He strained his groin early in camp, but returned quicker than expected and won the job. After 30 days, the Phillies can add him to the big-league roster to option him to the minor leagues.

Haseley was replaced by Mickey Moniak and Roman Quinn before the team turned to Odúbel Herrera, who has appeared to entrench himself as the everyday center fielder. Herrera, who played this season for the first time since his arrest in May of 2019 on domestic violence charges, seemed to have trouble facing major-league pitching after two-years away before adjusting. He entered Friday with 10 hits -- including two homers -- in his last 28 at-bats.

“He comes in here every single day and prepares to play hard,” Bryce Harper said earlier this week about Herrera. “I think you’re seeing him get more comfortable with us, get more comfortable with the team and in the batter’s box, as well. It’s a tough game to take time off, not being able to play and then come back and get thrown into the fire. I think he’s getting more and more comfortable every day as you can tell by his at-bats.

“And the thing about Odúbel, too, is he brings that emotion and that passion the correct way. On his walks he’s fired up, he’s clapping and he’s ready to go. I think that helps a team, that helps an organization kind of take that step every single day to be fiery and passionate, to the way guys prepare and play, so I think the more and more he gets comfortable the better he’s going to be and the more you’re going to see him out there in center field every single day.”

» READ MORE: Phillies’ Bryce Harper on Odúbel Herrera: ‘He’s one of us’ | Extra Innings

J.T.’s back

J.T. Realmuto flew to Florida Friday morning to join the Phillies after spending a day on the COVID-19 injured list. Realmuto tested negative for the coronavirus, but was placed in the league’s safety protocols after he had a fever and stomach ache earlier this week. He started Friday night as the designated hitter.

» READ MORE: The Phillies’ Alec Bohm is struggling vs. fastballs in a sophomore slump | Extra Innings

Didi’s not

Didi Gregorius was kept out of Friday night’s lineup, missing his second-straight game with a sore elbow. He was replaced at shortstop by Nick Maton, but the Phillies do not believe Gregorius’ injury is serious enough to place him on the 10-day injured list.

“He’s doing better,” Girardi said.

Extra bases

Archie Bradley will make his second rehab appearance on Saturday. If all goes well, the reliever will rejoin the team on Tuesday. He’s been out since April 11 with an oblique strain. ... Roman Quinn was scheduled to face pitchers Friday at the team’s Clearwater, Fla. complex but his right-index finger was still sore. A cut on the finger required nine stitches earlier this week after Quinn was hit while trying to bunt. ... Right-hander Enyel De Los Santos was optioned to triple A with Realmuto’s return. ... Aaron Nola will start Saturday night vs. Toronto.