X-rays last week revealed no major damage after Taylor Teagarden tweaked his lower back lifting weights, but Brittany Ghiroli of MLB.com reports that an MRI exam “raised some concerns.”
Teagarden is scheduled to be examined by a back specialist “to go over options” and Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com writes that there’s “no talk of surgery yet.” Yet being the key word, of course.
If healthy Teagarden is in line to back up Matt Wieters after the Orioles acquired him from the Rangers in December.
Teagarden has hit just .220 in 118 games as a big leaguer, but his .703 OPS is decent for a catcher and he’s good defensively behind the plate. Ronny Paulino and John Hester are the Orioles’ other catching options.
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.