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Bryce Harper has UCL tear for the Philadelphia Phillies

Vincent Frank

Philadelphia Phillies star outfielder Bryce Harper has been playing injured since about mid-April. In fact, the reigning NL MVP has been relegated to DH duties since then.

We now have more information on this via Alex Coffey of the Philadelphia Inquirer. According to Phillies manager Joe Girardi, Harper has a small tear in the UCL.

“Girardi said the Phillies had another test done on Harper last week that showed a small tear in his UCL. They had him visit Dr. ElAttrache this morning, who confirmed that it is a small tear. He’ll be a no throw for four weeks; they hope he’ll start a throwing program after that.”

Report on Bryce Harper injury

While this seems pretty bad, there’s some good news for the Phillies. Harper will undergo a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection that will keep him out of the lineup through Philadelphia’s weekend series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. However, he should be able to return as a designated hitter after that.

Related: 2022 MLB power rankings

Impact of Bryce Harper injury

Bryce Harper
May 9, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA; Philadelphia Phillies designated hitter Bryce Harper (3) exchanges high-fives in the dugout after scoring a run against the Seattle Mariners during the seventh inning at T-Mobile Park. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

This is the first real example of MLB going with a universal DH rule helping a star player remain on the field. Without it, Harper would likely be sidelined for at least the next month.

Harper, 29, has struggled to an extent this season — hitting .269 with six homers, 19 RBI and an .847 OPS. Obviously, the UCL injury to his elbow has impacted him big time. The two-time MVP is coming off a brilliant 2021 campaign for Philadelphia.

  • Bryce Harper stats (2021): .309 average, 35 homers, 84 RBI, 42 doubles, 1.044 OPS

The hope for Philadelphia is that Harper returns 100% after taking some time off throwing. The Phillies entered Thursday’s action with a 14-17 record and in third place in the NL East.