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Howard diagnosed with acute sinusitis; could play tomorrow

Just received an update from the Phillies on Ryan Howard, who has been out of the line-up for two straight games with an illness:

"Ryan Howard was seen by Dr. Marc Harwood today.  After reviewing previous tests and evaluating him, Dr. Harwood has diagnosed him with acute sinusitis," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said in a statement.   "His fever is gone and he will rest at home today.  If he feels better, Ryan will travel tomorrow to Tampa Bay to rejoin the team.  We are hopeful he will be able to play tomorrow as well."

So it sounds like Howard will not be on the team flight tonight to Tampa Bay. But if he feels better he'll fly down tomorrow morning and could potentially play tomorrow night.


Chase Utley and Raul Ibanez continue to lead in the National League All-Star voting at their respective positions, but Jimmy Rollins has been passed by Florida's Hanley Ramriez for the starting spot at shortstop.

After leading for the last 2 weeks, Rollins now trails Ramirez by 154,016 votes. Ramirez has 1,648,482 votes to 1,494,466 for Rollins.

Utley continues to run away from the Dodgers' Orlando Hudson, but has fallen behind St. Louis first baseman Albert Pujols as the top overall NL vote-getter.

Utley has 2,922,796 votes, to 2,934,794 for Pujols, who has a comfortable lead on the Phillies' Ryan Howard at first base.

Ibanez, on the disabled list with a groin strain, has 2,465,539 to lead in the outfield. Milwaukee's Ryan Braun is second (2,178,144), followed by the Mets' Carlos Beltran (1,779,344). The Cubs' Alfonso Soriano is fourth (1,639,664) followed by the Phillies' Shane Victorino (1,371,362). Suspended Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez remains in sixth (1,162,507).

At third base, the Phils' Pedro Feliz is fourth (the Mets' David Wright leads) and catcher Carlos Ruiz is fifth (the Cardinals' Yadier Molina has the top spot).

Starters for the July 14 game in St. Louis will be announced July 5.

Charlie Manuel will manager the NL All-Stars.


To read our earlier post on the current state of the Phillies, click here