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Cardinals recall John Gant, designate Kevin Siegrist for assignment

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The Cardinals announced on Thursday that pitcher John Gant has been recalled from Triple-A Memphis. Pitcher Kevin Siegrist was activated from the 10-day disabled list and designated for assignment to create roster space.

Gant, 25, has spent most of his season with Memphis. Across 18 starts, he posted a 3.83 ERA with a 99/25 K/BB ratio in 103 1/3 innings. He’ll operate out of the bullpen for the Cardinals.

Siegrist, 28, had been sidelined earlier this month with tendinitis in his left forearm. He was struggling prior to the injury, putting up a 4.98 ERA with a 36/20 K/BB ratio in 34 1/3 innings. Siegrist has two more years of arbitration eligibility remaining. Given his track record, he should find a new opportunity fairly quickly.

Bryce Harper will participate in the Home Run Derby if he makes the All-Star team

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Bryce Harper has, in recent years, declined participation in the Home Run Derby, with his last go at it coming in 2013, losing to Yoenis Cespedes in the final round. With the All-Star Game taking place at Nationals Park in Washington, however, he has changed his mind, saying today that he will compete if he is selected for the All-Star team.

Harper is currently second in voting among National League outfielders, so he stands a pretty good chance of making it. Even if he falls off in the voting, you have to assume that the powers that be will nudge NL manager A.J. Hinch to select Harper as a reserve, partially because of his actual power — he does have 19 homers so far this year — but mostly for his star power.

Simply put, you know dang well that both Major League Baseball and the Nationals want a home town guy with big time star power in the Derby, even if he’s not having as good a year as he’s capable of. As such, figure to see Harper hitting long balls in D.C. on July 16.