Giants may be ready to call up Pat Burrell already

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Pat Burrell is 5-for-12 with a homer in four games at Triple-A after signing a minor-league contract with the Giants last week and Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle speculates that he could be called up as soon as this weekend.
San Francisco’s offense ranks 13th in OPS and 14th in runs scored, but with Buster Posey taking over at first base and Aubrey Huff making room for him by moving to left field the Giants seemingly don’t have a place in the lineup for Burrell unless they’re willing to sacrifice a ton of defense.
And given that Burrell earned his release from the Rays by hitting .218 with a .311 on-base percentage and .361 slugging percentage over the past two seasons a nice stretch at Triple-A is hardly reason to hand him starts anyway. More likely is that Burrell would serve as a bench bat initially–Schulman notes a specific situation from last night’s game when he would have come in handy as a pinch-hitter–and perhaps get some spot starts against left-handed pitching.

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.