Phillies’ catcher suspended, Nats’ catcher healing

The Phillies had a rough 2012 season, but catcher Carlos Ruiz helped them fight through the tough patches, batting .325 and posting a .935 OPS, both career highs. He was arguably the Phillies’ top position player over the course of the season.

This upcoming year, the Phillies will be without Ruiz for nearly the first month of the season.

Major League Baseball has announced that Ruiz has been suspended for 25 games for testing positive for amphetamines.

The suspension means that Ruiz has tested positive twice; the first positive test only triggers more testing.

The Nationals don’t play the Phillies until May 24, so they won’t see a Ruiz-less Philadelphia squad during the suspension. But this is certainly a blow to one of the Nationals’ division rivals.

Meanwhile, Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos is doing well in his recovery from a torn meniscus and ACL in his right knee, according to his spokeswoman, Marfa Mata.

Ramos saw Dr. Richard Steadman in Vail, Colo., and got positive feedback on how his knee is progressing.

Mata reports that Dr. Steadman has cleared Ramos to increase his physical activities and says he’s “optimistic” that Ramos will be ready for spring training.

Ramos will continue to rehab, with Kurt Suzuki ready should the Nationals need him to retain the role as starting catcher going into 2013.

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