Phillies catchers on the mend


Apr 5, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cliff Lee (33) talks with Philadelphia Phillies catcher Wil Nieves (21) during the seventh inning game against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Phillies are on the verge of improving their battery and their backup battery, perhaps all in the upcoming week.

Both Carlos Ruiz and Wil Nieves are close to returning to the club as they are currently rehabbing.

Ruiz began working his way back from a concussion on Thursday with Class A Advanced Clearwater.  He was hitless while playing catcher Thursday, but picked up a hit in three at bats as the designated hitter Friday night.  He also walked, stole second and later scored a run after advancing to third on a throwing error.  Manager Ryne Sandberg says he is on a five or six day program before being assessed from there.

Nieves is “real close” according to Sandberg.  In 14 games this season Nieves is batting .259 with a home run and four runs batted in.

In the absence of Ruiz and Nieves, Cameron Rupp has made 14 starts.  Friday he batted in Marlon Byrd in the top of the second.

As Cliff Lee is set to return Monday night, it is possible he will be throwing to either Ruiz or Nieves sometime this week.