Braves OF Markakis goes on IL after possible COVID-19 exposure

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
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ATLANTA — Atlanta Braves outfielder Nick Markakis has been placed on the 10-day injured list after potentially being exposed to COVID-19.

The Braves announced the move just minutes before the start of their game Tuesday against the Washington Nationals.

Markakis initially opted out of the shortened season because of concerns about the coronavirus. A few games into the season, the 36-year-old changed his mind and decided to play.

He rejoined the Braves a couple of weeks ago and provided a boost to an injury plagued lineup, batting .353 with six RBIs and a walk-off homer in his first 11 games.

The Braves did not provide details of how Markakis may have been exposed to the virus. He was replaced on the active roster by rookie outfielder Cristian Pache, one of the team’s top prospects.

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.