Of late, Howard's struggles have elevated -- in his last 26 games, he's hitting .168 (15 of 95) with a .269 on-base percentage and a .221 slugging percentage and three extra-base hits. On the season, Howard's hitting .224 with 15 homers and 57 RBIs.
On Friday morning, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. denied reports the Phillies are considering releasing the 34-year-old (see story). And as one would expect, Howard hasn't been too pleased with the benching.
After Friday's game, manager Ryne Sandberg hinted Howard will be back in the lineup Saturday night vs. right-hander Josh Collmenter (8-5, 3.64).
Phillies analyst Marlon Anderson on Friday's Philly Sports Talk theorized Howard's upset because of a lack of respect being shown toward him by the Phils.
"It's the fact of not knowing you're in the lineup. Ryan has had 10 years in Philly where he has produced, where he has been a good player, he's been a staple in this organization. And what it comes [to] is the respect of the player," Anderson said.
"You look around the league and it's all about respect. And I think if he would have the respect -- he knows he's not putting up the numbers he wants to put up, he knows he's lacking in a lot of areas -- but it's still a respect factor that you have for a player like that. And I think that's where feelings are hurt."
To hear Anderson break down Howard more, watch the video above.