Boston’s starting rotation has been really good so far

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Red Sox starter David Price fired seven innings of shutout ball on Thursday afternoon against the Rays, continuing a trend of elite starting pitching to start the season. With seven starts in the books, Red Sox starters have compiled a minuscule 0.86 ERA.

Date Opp. Starter IP H R ER BB K HR
March 29 @ TBR Chris Sale 6.0 1 0 0 3 9 0
March 30 @ TBR David Price 7.0 4 0 0 0 5 0
March 31 @ TBR Rick Porcello 5.1 6 1 1 1 4 0
April 1 @ TBR Hector Velasquez 5.2 5 1 1 1 5 1
April 2 @ MIA Brian Johnson 6.0 6 1 1 2 5 1
April 3 @ MIA Chris Sale 5.0 5 1 1 0 6 0
April 5 vs. TBR David Price 7.0 3 0 0 3 5 0
TOTAL 42.0 30 4 4 10 39 2

For those keeping score at home, that’s also an 8.36 K/9, 2.14 BB/9, and 0.43 HR/9, all terrific rates. The Yankees have the next-best rotation ERA at 1.64. The Dodgers are next at 1.99.

Strangely enough, the only game the Red Sox have lost thus far is Sale’s Opening Day start. The Sox trailed 2-0 going into the bottom of the ninth on Thursday, but rallied for two runs to send the game into extra innings. Hanley Ramirez again had a game-winning hit, lacing a walk-off RBI single to right field in the bottom of the 12th inning. The Red Sox are 6-1.

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.