Nationals outfield prospect Bryce Harper hasn’t played in a game at Double-A Harrisburg since straining his right hamstring on August 18.
Harper won’t return to action before Harrisburg’s regular season schedule is through, but he could be ready in time for the Eastern League playoffs, which begin on Wednesday of next week.
According to Pete Kerzel of MASN, Harper went through his first rehab workout on Thursday in Pennsylvania, reporting no lingering pain or discomfort in his right hammy. He ran at about half-speed from right field to center field, played catch, then practiced his outfield throws.
Harper, 18, batted .297/.392/.501 with 17 home runs, 58 RBI and 26 stolen bases in 109 games this season between Single-A and Double-A. He has already committed to playing in the Arizona Fall League.
The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.
Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.
Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.
Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.
Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.