Dusty Baker says Bryce Harper is “a long way from running”

Getty Images
5 Comments

Two and a half weeks ago the Nationals placed Bryce Harper on the 10-day disabled list with a “significant bone bruise” in his left knee after he slipped on first base and hyperextended his left knee. At the time Nationals’ general manager Mike Rizzo told reporters that he didn’t believe the injury to be season-ending, though he didn’t have a clear timetable in mind for Harper’s recovery.

Today Dusty Baker gave an update. It’s not specific one way or the other, but it’s not terribly promising either: Baker said Harper is “a long way from running.”

Jayson Werth is back and is playing right field with Howie Kendrick covering left. The Nationals will be fine for the regular season without Harper — they have a 14-game lead in the NL East — but not having him in the playoffs would be a big, big problem.

 

 

Royals fire manager Mike Matheny after 65-97 end to season

Minnesota Twis v Kansas City Royals
Getty Images
2 Comments

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred were fired by the Kansas Cty Royals on Wednesday night, shortly after the struggling franchise finished the season 65-97 with a listless 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.

The Royals had exercised their option on Matheny’s contract for 2023 during spring training, when the club hoped it was turning the corner from also-ran to contender again. But plagued by poor pitching, struggles from young position players and failed experiments with veterans, the Royals were largely out of playoff contention by the middle of summer.

The disappointing product led owner John Sherman last month to fire longtime front office executive Dayton Moore, the architect of back-to-back American League champions and the 2015 World Series title team. Moore was replaced by one of his longtime understudies, J.J. Picollo, who made the decision to fire Matheny hours after the season ended.

Matheny became the fifth big league manager to be fired this year.

Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was replaced on June 3 by Rob Thomson, who engineered a miraculous turnaround to get the Phillies into the playoffs as a wild-card team. The Angels replaced Joe Maddon with Phil Nevin four days later, Toronto’s Charlie Montoyo was succeeded by John Schneider on July 13 and the Rangers’ Chris Woodward by Tony Beasley on Aug. 15.

In addition, Miami’s Don Mattingly said late last month that he will not return next season.