Ryan Howard could miss the rest of the season

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Roy Halladay is gearing up for a return later this month, but things are far less certain with Ryan Howard as he continues his rehab from July surgery on his right knee.

Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com was told by Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. that Howard has lost 15 to 20 pounds during his workouts, but has yet to be cleared to swing a bat. With many hurdles remaining in his rehab process, Amaro isn’t ready to say whether the veteran first baseman will make it back this season.

“I have no idea when or if he is going to be back this year,” Amaro said. “If he’s 100 percent and doing baseball activities, it’s possible. But there’s no reason to rush him back.”

When Howard had surgery to repair his meniscus back on July 10, he was expected to miss at least six to eight weeks. Perhaps there would be more sense of urgency if the Phillies were still in things, but they entered play tonight at 52-65 on the year. With $75 million owed to Howard over the next three seasons, there’s every reason for him to take his time.

Danny Farquhar taken to hospital after fainting in dugout

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White Sox reliever Danny Farquhar passed out in the dugout after completing his outing against the Astros on Friday evening. The cause of the incident has yet to be determined, but Farquhar was supervised by the club’s medical personnel and EMTs and regained consciousness before being taken to Rush University Medical Center for further treatment and testing. A diagnosis has not been announced by the team.

Farquhar pitched 2/3 of an inning in relief during Friday’s 10-0 loss to Houston. He was brought in to relieve James Shields in the top of the sixth inning and was immediately bested by George Springer, who belted a ground-rule double down the right field line and scored Brian McCann and Derek Fisher for the Astros’ sixth and seventh runs of the night. He recovered to strike out Jose Altuve, but was again punished with a two-run homer from Carlos Correa (his first of two), and induced a fly out to end the inning.

The 31-year-old righty pitched just 7 1/3 innings with the club prior to Friday’s performance, issuing four hits, three runs, two homers and eight strikeouts in seven appearances.