Bryce Harper plays left field, goes 2-for-3 in Double-A debut

4 Comments

Batting sixth and playing an unfamiliar left field, Bryce Harper went 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored Monday in his debut for Double-A Harrisburg.

The Senators ended up beating Erie 8-1 in front of a record crowd of 8,092.  The previous high crowd at Metro Bank Park was 8,078 for last year’s All-Star Game.

Harper hit third and played right field and center field for low Single-A Hagerstown prior to his promotion, so Monday was quite a change for him.  It was his first time in left field as a pro.

Harper, of course, immediately became the prospect on the Senators’ roster with his promotion, overtaking right-hander Brad Peacock and catcher Derek Norris.  However, it was the other two who truly shined Monday.  Peacock pitched six scoreless innings for the win, striking out nine, and Norris hit his 11th and 12th homers of the season.

Astros release Jon Singleton

Stacy Revere/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Astros have released first baseman Jon Singleton, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Singleton, 26, was suspended for 100 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse for a third time. He has had issues with marijuana in the post and admitted to being a drug addict several years ago. He said, “At this point it’s pretty evident to me that I’m a drug addict. I don’t openly tell everyone that, but it’s pretty apparent to myself. I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can’t block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that.”

Singleton played parts of two seasons in the majors in 2014-15 with the Astros, batting a combined .171/.290/.331 with 14 home runs and 50 RBI in — appropriately — 420 plate appearances. He spent 2016 with Triple-A Fresno and 2017 with Double-A Corpus Christi, putting up middling numbers.

If he can convince teams he’s still actively working to overcome his addiction, Singleton may be able to find an opportunity elsewhere. But his road back to the majors remains long. He was once a top prospect in the Phillies’ system, then was traded to the Astros in the Hunter Pence deal back in July 2011.