MIAMI — Jay Bruce was scratched Saturday afternoon from the Phillies lineup with a sore elbow but he does not expect to be sidelined for long.
Bruce said he felt his left elbow tighten while playing left field during Friday night’s loss to the Marlins. He was replaced in Saturday’s lineup by Roman Quinn, who started in center while Scott Kingery moved to left field. Bruce said he would be available to be used Saturday afternoon as a pinch hitter and could start Sunday in the series finale at Marlins Park.
“We’ll see,” Bruce said. “Going to take it one day at a time. Just being cautious.”
The Phillies acquired Bruce earlier this month from Seattle with the plan for him to be used in a reserve role. But the lefthanded hitter was pushed almost immediately into the starting lineup when Andrew McCutchen tore his ACL.
Through his first 80 plate appearances, Bruce is batting .276 with a .918 OPS and seven homers. He’s played in 21 of the team’s 23 games since being acquired as he missed two games with hamstring tightness. A day off in Miami should not hurt.
“It’s OK to get him a day off his feet,” manager Gabe Kapler said. “I don’t think he expected to play everyday in the outfield in Seattle and coming here I don’t think he expected to play everyday in the outfield but he’s just been so good, so dependable, and so reliable that we wanted to get him out there as much as possible. I don’t think a day off is going to harm him here.”