All five of Ruf's starts this season have come against left-handed pitchers. He is batting .278/.381/.333 with five RBI and two runs in 18 at-bats. He made the team due to a monster spring training and presumably solid summer camp, and he also survived the first round of roster cuts Thursday. As long as he keeps getting on base at a strong clip against southpaws, the playing time should still be there, and he should eventually start hitting for power.
Ruf went 2-for-3 with three RBI, a run scored and a walk in Friday's 9-2 win over the Rangers. Ruf got the Giants on the board with an RBI single in the second inning. He later capped off a three-run seventh inning with a two-RBI double to knock in Evan Longoria and Donovan Solano. Ruf has found most of his at-bats versus southpaws, and he's done handsomely with a .385/.467/.462 triple slash, five RBI and two runs scored in 15 plate appearances. With Brandon Belt back from an Achilles injury, it may be harder for Ruf to find consistent playing time at first base.
The Giants selected Ruf's contract Thursday. Ruf was one of six non-roster players the Giants bumped up the 40-man roster and 30-man Opening Day roster in advance of Thursday's opener versus the Dodgers. Back in North America after a three-year stint in the Korea Baseball Organization, Ruf will provide the Giants with some right-handed power off the bench. He could find himself in the lineup regularly versus southpaws, against whom he's posted a .299/.379/.542 career slash line (150 wRC+).
Ruf made the Giants' 60-man roster. Even though he was just in camp on a minor-league deal, Ruf had a chance to make the roster under normal circumstances thanks to a .429/.469/.1.000 line with three home runs and a 7:3 K:BB in 32 spring plate appearances. Ruf can play first base and left field, and if his spring outburst is remotely indicative of his current talent level, he could also get starts at designated hitter.
Ruf, who was in Giants camp on a minor-league deal, could open the season on the 26-man roster, Maria Guardado of MLB.com reports. He hit .429/.469/1.000 with three home runs, five doubles, one triple, one steal and a 7:3 K:BB in 32 plate appearances this spring. The journeyman first baseman/left fielder spent the last three years playing in the KBO, slashing .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs in 404 games over those three campaigns. Guardado suggests Ruf could make the roster as an outfielder and backup first baseman, but it seems more likely that he heads to Triple-A, as he is not on the 40-man roster.
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