Yawkey Way is no more

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Today the City of Boston approved the plan to change the name of Yawkey Way, the street outside Fenway Park named in honor of the former Red Sox owner, Tom Yawkey.  The proposal passed unanimously, and the raodway will revert to being called Jersey Street, which it was originally called before being changed in 1977 after Yawkey’s death.

The team filed a petition with the commission in February to change the name as part of a mission to “reinforce that Fenway Park is inclusive and welcoming to all.” As we noted when the proposal was first made, having the name Yawkey on it contradicted that mission, given Yawkey’s track record as team owner. He famously refused to promote black players from the minor leagues during the 1950’s despite exceptional performance and the Red Sox became the last major league team to integrate in 1959 when Pumpsie Green was added to the roster. Jackie Robinson, who broke the color barrier in 1947, called Yawkey “one of the most bigoted guys in baseball,” and there is considerable historical material which supports that claim.

The city renamed a stretch of the road David Ortiz Drive last summer in honor of the retired Red Sox designated hitter. Now the whole thing has a new appellation.

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.