One of the brightest young stars in baseball Bryce Harper is counting his blessings this morning, as it looks like he has avoided a catastrophe. During the first inning of last nights game, which had been delayed for three hours due to rain, Harper was running out a ground ball at first base when his foot slipped off the base and planted into the ground, twisting his leg violently and sending him flying through the air.
As he rolled around on the ground in agony, Nationals trainers and manager Dusty Baker rushed onto the field to help the youngster out, baker with his hands on his head. After being helped off the field without putting any weight on the leg, the panic set in among fans and the organization that the injury would be substantial. Here is the play:
After an MRI this morning, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo gave everyone an update:
We dodged a bullet here," said Rizzo, adding that it was "pretty remarkable" that Harper avoided a more significant injury.
"The bone bruise is something of significance, and we're going to treat him cautiously and hopefully have him back later on this season," Rizzo said. "We put ourselves in a position that we can treat it cautiously, and we'll continue down that road."
Certainly that is great news for everyone. Harper has been placed on the 10- day disabled list, although there is no timetable for his return. Outfielder Michael Taylor, who himself has been out of action since early July with his own leg injury, has been called up to take his roster spot.
The Nationals dodged a big bullet here, as they have legitimate World Series hopes for this year. That all goes out the window without Harper, who was having an MVP-type season before sliding off that base, hitting .326 with 29 home runs and 87 RBIs. They go as he goes, and while there is no way he is back soon, they should have him for the stretch run and playoffs. Thankfully for them, as of today they are running away with the NL East, owning a 14.5 game lead in the division. That will afford Harper as much time as he needs.