Buhner's new bat

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Jay Buhner was in M’s camp today showing off a new bat he’s helping a Washington-based sporting goods company develop:

It’s a new bat called the Axe, made of maple with a handle that’s shaped like, you guessed it, the handle of an axe . . . The idea, Trudeau said, is based on stories that
Ted Williams would swing an axe in the offeseason to build his swing.
The flatter shape of an axe handle fits the hand better than a
perfectly round bat. Not only that, but the knob is angled such that
Buhner believes hitters won’t suffer problems with hand fatigue or
hamate bone injuries that are more common with a traditional bat.

Makes me miss Skip Caray even more than I do.  Such a bat would give a whole new meaning to one of his “Chopper to Chipper” calls.

Phillies’ Bryce Harper to miss start of season after elbow surgery

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PHILADELPHIA – Phillies slugger Bryce Harper will miss the start of the 2023 season after he had reconstructive right elbow surgery.

The operation was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles.

Harper is expected to return to Philadelphia’s lineup as the designated hitter by the All-Star break. He could be back in right field by the end of the season, according to the team.

The 30-year-old Harper suffered a small ulnar collateral ligament tear in his elbow in April. He last played right field at Miami on April 16. He had a platelet-rich plasma injection in May and shifted to designated hitter.

Harper met Nov. 14 with ElAttrache, who determined the tear did not heal on its own, necessitating surgery.

Even with the elbow injury, Harper led the Phillies to their first World Series since 2009, where they lost in six games to Houston. He hit .349 with six homers and 13 RBIs in 17 postseason games.

In late June, Harper suffered a broken thumb when he was hit by a pitch and was sidelined for two months. The two-time NL MVP still hit .286 with 18 homers and 65 RBIs for the season.

Harper left Washington and signed a 13-year, $330 million contract with the Phillies in 2019. A seven-time All-Star, Harper has 285 career home runs.

With Harper out, the Phillies could use Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber at designated hitter. J.T. Realmuto also could serve as the DH when he needs a break from his catching duties.