Ryan Howard is not expected to return to the Phillies' lineup until Sunday at the earliest to rest his sore left knee.  Howard sat out Monday due to soreness in his ailing knee. He's going to continue to require regular days of rest, it seems the rest of the season.

Howard admitted that his left knee malady will likely be an ongoing issue.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said Howard "has some arthritis" in the knee and the leg is "going to always be bothering him."

"Right now I'm just looking at it day to day," Howard said back in May about the knee. "Sometimes it's a little more, sometimes it's a little less. Obviously that's going to be something. Right now I'm looking at it day to day, and trying to run with the good days."

Howard has been nursing a sore knee for some time now, but is also being given a few days off for mental purposes, he has gone hitless in his last 16 at-bats.  With the Phillies squaring off against southpaws the next two nights, it's a perfect opportunity for the Phillies to rest their ailing first baseman.