The Giants have placed first baseman/outfielder Darin Ruf on the 10-day injured list due to a right oblique strain. The placement is retroactive to September 20. Alex Dickerson has been activated from his own 10-day IL stint to replacement Ruf on San Francisco’s active roster.
This is the second time Ruf has been on the injured list this season, as he missed just under a month earlier in the year due to a right hamstring strain. If Ruf’s has a low-level oblique strain, he might very well be able to return to action in the minimum 10 days. However, if Ruf has a Grade 2 strain or worse, or if he simply has a setback in his recovery from a mild strain, it could impact his availability for the Giants’ postseason roster.
Missing Ruf for even 10 days will be a blow for the Giants as they try to hold off the Dodgers for the NL West lead. One of many unheralded players who have emerged as huge contributors for San Francisco, Ruf has hit .270/.383/.513 with 20 home runs over an even 400 plate appearances since the start of the 2020 season. Ruf saw a lot of action at first base in Brandon Belt’s absence, and in left field as the right-handed hitting side of the Giants’ ever-shifting outfield platoons.
It has been quite a return to Major League Baseball for Ruf, who broke into the Show in impressive fashion with the Phillies in 2012-13, but his production trailed off over the next three years. Ruf then went to the Samsung Lions of the Korea Baseball Organization and revitalized his career, hitting .313/.404/.564 with 86 homers over his 404 games in Daegu.
San Francisco will look to replace Ruf’s right-handed bat with a lefty swinger in Dickerson, though Dickerson is looking to re-establish his own status as a hidden gem on the Giants’ roster. After some big numbers in his first two seasons in the Bay Area, Dickerson has hit a more modest .235/.303/.426 over 304 PA in 2021, though he has hit a career-best 13 homers. Dickerson’s performance has surely been hampered by injuries, as he previously spent time on the IL with a right shoulder impingement and back tightness this year prior to this current absence for a right hamstring strain. Dickerson will return after just shy of three weeks on the injured list with this latest problem.