Three minor leaguers suspended

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Can’t wait for ESPN the Magazine’s survey about what people think of THESE guys. The unlucky winners:

  • Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Minor League outfielder Brandon Bayardi, who is on the roster of the rookie-level Orem Owlz of the Pioneer League, has been suspended for 50 games without pay after testing positive for Methylhexaneamine.
  • New York Mets Minor League left-handed pitcher Daniel Huchingson, who is on the roster of the Double-A Binghamton Mets of the Eastern League, has been suspended for 50 games without pay after a second violation for a drug of abuse.
  • Toronto Blue Jays Minor League catcher Sean Ochinko, who is on the roster of the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons of the International League, has been suspended for 50 games without pay after testing positive for an Amphetamine.

Nice mix of drugs this week, guys. Really like to see that out there. Way to keep ’em guessing. Now, everyone in … 1! 2! 3! Drugs! — “DRUGS!!”

That’s what I like to see.

Phillies’ Bryce Harper to miss start of season after elbow surgery

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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.