Daniel Murphy out 4-6 months with knee injury

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Slated to be the Mets’ starting first baseman, Daniel Murphy injured his knee late in spring training and then watched as Ike Davis took over the job for what could be the next decade or so. Once healthy the Mets demoted Murphy to Triple-A, but he lasted just eight games there before re-injuring his knee and is now expected to miss the remainder of the season with a torn MCL.
Mets fans latched on to Murphy as a long-term answer when he hit .313 with an .871 OPS in 49 games as a 23-year-old rookie in 2008, but the dirty little secret is that he was never all that promising a prospect. Handed a full-time job last season he hit just .266 with 12 homers in 155 games, posting a .741 OPS that ranked 23rd among the 24 first basemen who batted at least 450 times.
Combined with his strong rookie numbers that gives Murphy a .275 batting average, .331 on-base percentage, and .437 slugging percentage through 204 games in the majors, which is about what you’d expect from someone who hit .295/.356/.452 in the minors. He’s still just 25 years old and certainly looks capable of being a decent platoon player, but now he’s facing a long road back from the knee injury and an uncertain future in New York.

Mike Trout has a torn thumb ligament, could require surgery

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Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.

While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.

Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.

Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.

Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.

Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.

Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.

In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.