Wade Davis lands on the disabled list with a flexor strain

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The Royals placed closer Wade Davis on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 28, due to a flexor strain in his right elbow, the club announced on Sunday. Pitcher Matt Strahm has been recalled from Double-A Northwest Arkansas.

This is bad timing for the Royals, as Davis was drawing some trade interest leading up to Monday afternoon’s trade deadline. The Dodgers in particular were linked to Davis as recently as Thursday.

Davis landed on the disabled list earlier this month with a strained forearm and returned shortly after the All-Star break. That he’s back on the disabled list is obviously concerning. As pointed out at Rotoworld, flexor strains are often precursors to UCL issues.

In 33 2/3 innings this season, Davis recorded 21 saves with a 1.60 ERA and a 32/15 K/BB ratio. Compared to previous years, his strikeout rate is markedly down and his walk rate has ballooned as well.

Kelvin Herrera is expected to fill in at closer while Davis is sidelined. Davis is eligible to return on August 12.

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.