Bryce Harper undergoes Tommy John surgery

4:50 p.m: The Phillies announced the surgery and provided this update on their schedule: “The prognosis is Bryce’s return as the designated hitter at the 2023 All-Star break with the potential to return to right field at the end of the regular season.”

4:10 p.m: Phillies player/designated hitter Bryce Harper He underwent Tommy John surgery today, according to Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia. Salisbury adds that things have gone “very well” and that Harper could be back in a competitive environment by mid-May.

Harper was diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament in May, which prevented him from pitching. However, he was still able to hit and served as the Phillies’ designated hitter for the rest of the season, delaying treatment until the end of the season. The UCL injury didn’t slow him down at all, as he finished the year with a hitting streak of .286/.364/.514 for a wRC+ of 138. Then he went crazy in the playoffs, hitting .349/.414/.746 for a wRC+ of 217 and helping the Phillies to a Get to the world championship.

It was reported last week that Harper will undergo surgery of some kind, though the extent of it won’t be known until he’s truly under the knife. One option was to have an internal brace procedure, which generally requires less recovery time than a full Tommy John procedure. However, the ligament damage was apparently significant enough that a full TJS procedure was eventually required.

Of the two possible outcomes, this is definitely bad news for the Phillies. However, they are not as terrible as if the archer. TJS usually requires a pitcher to miss 12-18 months while he recovers and regains strength, but position players can return faster. for example, Shuhei Ohtani He underwent TJS in October of 2018 but was the designated hitter for the Angels by early May of 2019.

Every player and every injury is unique, so it can’t be assumed that Harper will follow the same schedule. But it goes to show that Harper’s 2023 movie isn’t doomed. As Salisbury mentions, Harper will likely be playing in competitive games by the middle of May, and presumably he’ll be on some kind of rehab stint that will see him rejoin the team after that. The next question will be when Harper will be able to win the field back, which is also something that could happen in 2023. Didi Gregory She had TJS in October 2018 and was playing Shortstop by June of 2019, about eight months later.

The ongoing fallout from Harper’s injury has been, and will continue to be, mitigated by the designated hitter. The National League has not adopted DH on a permanent basis until the 2022 season, which is good timing for the Phils because it allowed Harper to stay in the lineup for most of 2022 and will allow him to return faster next year.

While Harper will be sidelined at the start of the season, that would open up a DH spot for some of the club’s less defensive defenders, such as Kyle Schwarber And the Nick Castellanos. Although DH allowed the club to hang on to Harper’s bat, it also meant that Sharper and Castellanos had to pitch much more than they had originally envisioned. For part of 2023 at least, they will have more ability to use the DH slot for these guys. The club’s usual pitch mix is ​​to consist of these two together Brandon Marsh in the center. If a corner kicker is in the DH slot, that opens up playing time for players such as Matt Ferling or Dalton Guthrie. Then again, the club can also use the DH slot to get it Darrick Hall In the lineup more, as the first baseman is currently blocked Rhys Hoskins there.

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