Brandon Moss on batting average: “It’s the stupidest stat!”

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Brandon Moss was a big part of the Athletics’ offense both in the regular season, and in the American League Wild Card game against the Royals. In the one-game playoff, Moss homered twice and knocked in five runs, but it just wasn’t enough as the A’s were eventually the victims of a 12-inning, 9-8 walk-off loss.

During the regular season, Moss hit .234/.334/.438, slugging 25 home runs and knocking in 81 runs. It’s the third consecutive season in which Moss has hit 20-plus home runs, which comes after years of limited opportunities in the minor leagues with the Red Sox, Pirates, and Phillies.

Moss talked with Eno Sarris of FanGraphs in what is a must-read interview. Fittingly, as he is on the Athletics, Moss is a huge advocate of Sabermetrics, calling batting average “the stupidest stat”. He also recalled how Phillies GM Ruben Amaro passed over him in favor of John Bowker in 2011 because it was believed that Moss couldn’t hit a fastball. Also noteworthy: Adam Dunn did not know who Amaro was.

Dunn: Tell me. Who’s this?

Moss: Ruben Amaro.

Dunn: Who’s that?

Moss: The GM for the Phillies. I was with the Phillies.

Dunn: The GM. They have no say.

Moss: Well, yes it does matter, if you want to be called up. I was having a good year and they went out and traded for a guy because they needed left-handed bench bat and someone asked, you know Moss is having a pretty good year in Triple-A for you guys, why do you need to go outside. He was like ‘We just don’t believe Brandon Moss is consistently able to hit a major league fastball.’ And I was like, that’s really all I kinda hit. It’s my best pitch. Everything else, I just hope I hit it. If you’re here, you’re like that. You better be able to hit that pitch. It was a funny comment and I laughed about it. Okay, if that’s how they feel, I can’t do anything about that.

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.