According to beat writer Bill Ladson of MLB.com, Nationals outfield prospect Bryce Harper was pulled from a game Thursday at Double-A Harrisburg after injuring his hamstring while running the bases.
Harper had to be carried off the field by trainers, but early indications point to the injury being rather minor. He’ll be reevaluated Friday morning.
The 18-year-old phenom has posted an uninspiring .254/.324/.397 batting line with three home runs and seven doubles in 143 plate appearances since jumping to the Double-A level back in early July. He had a sparkling .318/.423/.554 slash line with 14 home runs and 17 doubles over 305 plate appearances at Single-A Hagerstown earlier this year.
Most prospect-ranking services list Harper as the most promising young talent in baseball.
UPDATE, 11:35pm: According to Mark Zuckerman of CSN Washington, Harper will be shut down for the rest of the season if he doesn’t show improvement within the next few days. The minor league schedule only goes another two weeks, and the Nats aren’t going to let him back on the field at less than 100 percent.
The Blue Jays dropped Thursday afternoon’s game to the Rangers 11-4, splitting the four-game home series. And, impressively, the Blue Jays failed for the ninth time to get back to .500. The club is now 35-37.
Here’s a look at all the times the Blue Jays could’ve evened out their won-lost record and what happened:
April 5 (0-1): Lost 3-1 to the Orioles
April 7 (1-2): Lost 10-8 to the Rays
June 1 (26-27): Lost 12-2 to the Yankees
June 3 (27-28): Lost 7-0 to the Yankees
June 5 (28-29): Lost 5-3 to the Athletics
June 13 (31-32): Lost 8-1 to the Rays
June 16 (32-33): Lost 11-4 to the White Sox
June 20 (34-35): Lost 6-1 to the Rangers
June 22 (35-36): Lost 11-4 to the Rangers
The Blue Jays are now a half-game behind the Orioles for fifth place in the AL East, but they’re only 5.5 games behind the first-place Yankees. Interestingly, if the Blue Jays played in the NL East and had the same record, they would be in second place. But even the Phillies — baseball’s worst team — have been at .500 or better for a few days: after winning Opening Day and after game Nos. 6, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22.
Hechavarria, 28, is currently on a rehab assignment for a strained left oblique. It’s the second time this season he’s hit the sidelines with an oblique injury. Hechavarria is also hitting a disappointing .277/.288/.385 over 67 plate appearances, which is marginally better than his career averages.
While the Marlins are shopping Hechavarria at depressed value, there are two factors that give him value: he still plays good defense, and he’s under team control through the 2018 season. Passan does estimate that Hechavarria will see a pay raise from $4.3 million this season to $6-7 million next season in his third and final year of arbitration eligibility.