Taylor Teagarden to miss time with fractured thumb

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Orioles backup catcher Taylor Teagarden left today’s game against the Athletics with a dislocated thumb caused by a foul tip. He will be reevaluated tomorrow, but he is expected to miss three to four weeks, tweets Dan Connolly. In his absence, the Orioles will likely call up Luis Exposito from Triple-A Norfolk.

Teagarden had yet to log his first hit of the 2013 season, entering this afternoon’s game with no hits in 11 at-bats. Before leaving the game today, he was 0-for-2 with a strikeout. Exposito hit .046 in 22 trips to the plate with the Orioles last year and is hitting .218 with the Tides to start 2013.

Phillies owner John Middleton is in Las Vegas with Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper
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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.