Rajai Davis shut down for year after hamstring injury setback

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Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports that the Blue Jays have shut down outfielder Rajai Davis for the remainder of the season after experiencing a setback in his recovery from a hamstring injury.

Toronto acquired Davis from the A’s in November and then signed him to a two-year, $5.75 million contract hoping that he’d get on base for the lineup’s many sluggers and inject some speed into the powerful offense.

He accomplished the speed part, swiping 34 bases in 94 games, but Davis was also thrown out 11 times and hit just .238 with a .273 on-base percentage. He’s under contract for $2.75 million next season and the Blue Jays also have a $3 million option or $500,000 buyout for 2013, but Davis figures to have a lesser role as a fourth outfielder.

Bryce Harper played some third base in an intrasquad game

Bryce Harper third base
Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Phillies star outfielder Bryce Harper played some third base during Monday’s intrasquad game at Citizens Bank Park, Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports. Harper had been pestering manager Joe Girardi for the opportunity and the skipper finally gave in.

Girardi told Harper, “No diving. And make sure your arm is loose.” Harper had the opportunity to field one ball, a grounder to his left and he made the play perfectly.

Why put Harper at third base? Girardi said, “I think it’s important the guys have fun. I saw him a week ago taking ground balls there and I was impressed. His hands worked well out front and he threw the ball across the field well. I told him, ‘You look good there.'”

Despite the solid showing, don’t expect Harper to show up at third base in a meaningful game anytime soon. That being said, the Phillies’ second and third base situations are still not cemented. Jean Segura will likely open the season at the hot corner with Scott Kingery at second, but things could change between now and Opening Day in 10 days.

Harper, 27, is coming off a solid first season with the Phillies. He hit .260/.372/.510 with 36 doubles, 35 home runs, 114 RBI, 98 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases across 682 plate appearances. Per FanGraphs, Harper’s 4.6 Wins Above Replacement ranked 16th in the National League. For some people, those numbers weren’t nearly good enough, so the expectations remain high as Harper enters year two of his 13-year, $330 million contract.