An industry source tells Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com that Jacoby Ellsbury suffered another fractured rib and is “probably” done for the rest of the season. The speedy center fielder was examined by Dr. Lewis Yocum in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
Ellsbury, who just returned from the disabled list on August 4, suffered the fracture stumbling over first base after colliding with Tommy Hunter of the Rangers last Friday night.
It’s not yet clear if the new fracture is related to any of the previous five fractures Ellsbury suffered in a collision with Adrian Beltre in April.
We’re hearing he’s “probably” done right now, but considering how long it took him to come back from the previous fractures — and his subsequent and swift returns to the disabled list — the Red Sox are better served to let him rest for several months in order to properly rest and heal the fracture.
Ellsbury has played in just 18 of the team’s 120 games this season, batting .192/.241/.244 with five RBI and seven stolen bases.
Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies owner John Middleton flew to Las Vegas for a meeting with Bryce Harper on Friday. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, it’s “more of a meet-and-greet than a sign-a-deal” affair, but as the club is still at the forefront of trade rumors involving the All-Star slugger, there remains a possibility (however slight) that something could be completed in the days to come.
Even now, the Phillies aren’t alone in the race to sign Harper, but recent rumors have helped whittle down the competition from five or more teams (Phillies, Nationals, White Sox, Giants, and Padres) to three strong contenders. The Giants are said to be interested in a lucrative short-term deal with the outfielder, while the Padres remain in the conversation despite inking Manny Machado to a mammoth 10-year, $300 million contract this week. It’s not yet clear just how far either team would go to outbid Philadelphia as talks with Harper intensify.
As for the Nationals and White Sox, the former officially bowed out earlier today, and MLB Network’s Jon Heyman adds that the latter won’t make a strong play for Harper as they feel the asking price and competing offers are “getting too high” for the 26-year-old’s services. If a mystery team is still in the mix, there’s been no word on their standing with Harper in the last month or so.