Chicago’s Tim Anderson suspended by MLB for contact with umpire

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CHICAGO – Major League Baseball suspended Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson for three games and fined the All-Star an undisclosed amount Saturday for making contact with plate umpire Nick Mahrley during an argument.

Anderson was in the White Sox’s lineup hitting leadoff Saturday against Oakland after he appealed the suspension, and he’ll remain active until his appeal is heard. It’s the third time he’s been disciplined by MLB in the past year, including a one-game ban overturned on appeal earlier this season.

Anderson and manager Tony La Russa were ejected Friday in a 7-3 loss to the Athletics after a heated exchange over a called strike from reliever Domingo Acevedo that appeared to be high. The tip of Anderson’s helmet appeared to make contact with Mahrley.

Anderson had two singles on Saturday and was at the plate in the ninth when Gavin Sheets scored from third on Zach Jackson‘s wild pitch to give Chicago a 3-2 win. Following the game, Anderson declined to speak to reporters about the suspension.

Before the contest La Russa said he watched video from the incident and said, “I think there’s an argument to be made in Tim’s favor, so we’ll see.

“Did you see how the interaction happened?” La Russa added. “The way we see it, there’s an argument to be made that the umpire didn’t move back, he was moving forward as well.”

Anderson missed the first two games of 2022 as punishment for making contact with an umpire during a bench-clearing incident last September. He was also suspended a game in April after directing an obscene gesture toward fans, but that ban was overturned on appeal.

Anderson is batting .310 with six homers and 25 RBIs.

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.