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MLB Weekly Digest July 4th Edition: Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder Bryce Harper Undergoes Thumb Surgery

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The prior week in MLB was about an outfielder in the National League who underwent surgery.

A player turns down a hefty contract extension from their current club, and a starting pitcher for a team in the American League is close to returning.

Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder Bryce Harper Undergoes Thumb Surgery

Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper underwent surgery several days ago to repair his fractured left thumb.

The doctors are estimating Harper will be out six to eight weeks, but since he is a fast healer, he could be back sooner, per Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Harper injured his thumb when he was hit by a pitch from San Diego Padres starting pitcher Blake Snell last weekend.

Harper has been limited to designated hitter duty for much of the 2022 campaign due to an elbow ligament injury.

Nonetheless, the outfielder was having a very productive season.

He has posted a .318 batting average and .985 OPS in 64 games with 49 runs scored, 77 hits, 21 doubles, 15 home runs, 48 RBIs, and nine stolen bases.

Harper has played like the best player in the National League; losing him for an extended period is a significant loss for the Phillies.

Hopefully, he does come back later in the season and propel the Phillies to a postseason berth.

Washington Nationals Outfielder Juan Soto Rejects Large Contract Extension

Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto still has not received a satisfying contract extension.

Soto rejected a second large extension from the Nationals during spring training; sources told Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post.

The terms of the extension are unknown; it exceeded the 13-year, $350-million offer he refused before the lockout, according to Dougherty.

Soto has previously said he would prefer to go year-to-year in arbitration.

He and the club are still discussing a possible extension; sources told Dougherty.

Soto is two years away from free agency, and the Nationals have the second-worst record in the NL.

It would make perfect sense to deal Soto for a premium package of talented players.

However, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo squashed any thought of a midseason trade last month by stating, “We are not trading Juan Soto.”

Soto has had a slow start this year, as indicated by his .226 average and .827 OPS in 78 games with 16 doubles, 15 home runs, 33 RBIs, and five stolen bases.

Still, he leads MLB with 63 walks and is 10th in the NL in on-base percentage.

Boston Red Sox Starting Pitcher Chris Sale Nearing Return from Rib Injury

Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale will need to make at least more minor league rehab start before the team decides if he is ready to join the rotation after being sidelined all season because of a rib injury.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora said a couple of days ago that Sale is close to returning.

In his recent rehab outing, sale struck out seven in four innings for Double-A Portland.

Sale suffered an injury to his rib cage during spring training.

He compiled a 3.16 ERA in nine starts in his return from Tommy John surgery last year.

The Red Sox having Sale healthy would significantly boost the starting rotation.

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Chris Lacey

Chris is a New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.
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Chris Lacey
Chris is a New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.
author

Chris Lacey

Chris is a New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.

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