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Tests rule out fracture in Bryce Harper’s left ankle

Jul 21, 2012, 5:35 PM EDT

Bryce Harper Getty Getty Images

UPDATE: Feel free to exhale, Nats fans. According to Mark Zuckerman of, tests on Harper’s ankle revealed a contusion and not a break. He’s sitting out the nightcap of today’s doubleheader against the Braves.

2:21 PM: Word from the Nationals is that Harper is dealing with left ankle soreness. His exit from today’s game was considered precautionary.

2:05 PM: According to Mark Zuckerman of, Bryce Harper left the first game of this afternoon’s doubleheader against the Braves after fouling a ball off his left ankle/foot on a bunt attempt.

Harper suffered the injury in the bottom of the first inning. He struck out swinging to finish the at-bat and remained in the game initially, but Roger Bernadina replaced him in center field to begin the top of the third inning. The severity of the injury isn’t yet known, but it’s ill-timed for the Nationals, who have designated outfielders Rick Ankiel and Xavier Nady for assignment in recent days.

Harper, 19, is batting .268/.339/.440 with eight home runs, 26 RBI, 11 stolen bases and a .779 OPS in 72 games played during his rookie season.

  1. Stiller43 - Jul 21, 2012 at 2:14 PM

    .268 and pple think he’s jesus. The fact he gets so much more pub than mike trout who’s only 1 yr older and killing harper in every stat is pathetic.

    Love the way he plays hard though.

    • schlom - Jul 21, 2012 at 2:46 PM

      I think everyone realizes what a potential superstar Trout is (in fact it’s certainly not a consensus on who is going to be the better pro) but when Trout was Harper’s age he was hitting 220/281/390 (88 OPS+). I think you are underestimating just how young Harper is compared to his peers:

      Harper is younger than anyone in Triple A, two of the three Double A leagues (only Jurickson Profar is younger in the Texas League), and the California League.

      • brianc6234 - Jul 22, 2012 at 12:00 AM

        You can’t compare Mike Trout in 2011 to Bryce Harper in 2012. Harper has been playing every day. Mike Scioscia didn’t let Trout do that last year. He only played a day or two at a time. That’s really stupid. This time the Angels called Trout up and must have told Scioscia he has no choice. Mike Trout is playing ever day.

    • Kevin S. - Jul 21, 2012 at 5:43 PM

      Do Trout fans turn off all the highlight shows so they can whine about the coverage Bryce Harper gets without seeing all of the Trout coverage? Seriously, they’re both getting a ton of pub, and they both deserve it.

      • Ben - Jul 21, 2012 at 6:26 PM

        And here’s the kicker with Harper–

        “Suppose that you have a 20-year-old player and a 21-year-old player of the same ability as hitters; let’s say that each hits about .265 with ten home runs. How much difference is there in the expected career home run totals for the two players?”

        As best I can estimate, the 20-year-old player can be expected to hit about 61% more home runs in his career. That’s right—61%.”

        (quote from Bill James)

        A year difference is MASSIVE. Trout is really, really good, but what Harper is doing at 19 is historic if only for doing it at 19. It’s totally possible Trout is the better player long-term, but Harper deserves all the hype he’s getting, and then some.

      • brianc6234 - Jul 22, 2012 at 12:01 AM

        The difference though is Mike Trout has been earning his coverage. Bryce Harper has been getting a ton of coverage since he was called up.

      • Kevin S. - Jul 22, 2012 at 1:18 AM

        Mike Trout was covered plenty before he came up. But some butthurt leftcoasters apparently can’t live with themselves if they aren’t inventing perceived slights.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 22, 2012 at 8:56 AM

        Did you thump your chest after posting, Kevin?

      • Kevin S. - Jul 22, 2012 at 11:04 AM

        No. I’m a huge fan of what both Harper and Trout are doing. But the whining and need to denigrate Harper coming from Trout fans is really, really pissing me off.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 22, 2012 at 1:38 PM

        Okay, Kevin. I just did a name search on this site for both Mike Trout and Bryce Harper. Mike Trout’s name resulted in 4 pages of hits, and Bryce Harper’s name resulted in12 pages of hits. These are not necessarily MT or BH specific articles, but a rudimentary look at the search results will indicate a strong preference to writing about Harper’s exploits as opposed to Trout’s.

        And your response is that “leftcoasters” are “butthurt” over a “perceived slight.” I don’t know about that.

        I think you missed a spot…. right there, on your chin.

      • Kevin S. - Jul 22, 2012 at 2:51 PM

        Right. Repeated statements that I think both are amazing, and I’m still getting insinuations that I let Harper jizz on my face. Fuck off.

      • Kevin S. - Jul 22, 2012 at 6:26 PM

        Alright, I’m sorry for that last line. Completely uncalled for. But I think I’ve made it pretty damn clear that I’m not in the tank for either player, and a rudimentary (by your own admission) analysis of Google results didn’t justify your shot, either.

  2. natslady - Jul 21, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Nats have a guy in the minors they could bring up (Corey Brown). But what this team doesn’t need is more raw rookies.

    • jon623 - Jul 22, 2012 at 4:42 PM

      That’s when you use him as a piece in a trade for a skilled veteran.

    • JustMeMike - Jul 22, 2012 at 8:03 PM

      They did bring him up. Nats DL’ed Ian Desmond,

  3. georgewashingtonsghost - Jul 21, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    Compare Harper’s numbers with Trout’s from his time with the Angles last season.

  4. juanquixote - Jul 21, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    Harper could use a few days off, he can’t hit for anything the last couple weeks

    • joecool16280 - Jul 21, 2012 at 4:15 PM

      Exactly. This could possibly just their way of giving him a breather.

      • Old Gator - Jul 21, 2012 at 5:35 PM

        He may have made one or two more absurdly mature comments, and been sent for a precautionary examination to be sure that he isn’t suffering from late onset progeria.

    • 18thstreet - Jul 21, 2012 at 5:27 PM

      I was watching. Looked like something that would hurt like hell of a day or two, but not ruin a season or even a week. Unfortunately, they’ve got a double header today, so he’ll miss more games than you’d like (if you’re rooting for the Nats).

      And since I’m not a doctor, I’m completely imagining what the extent of his injuries are.

    • jon623 - Jul 22, 2012 at 12:00 PM

      ^Haha Gator, good one. I’m going to let everyone else google that so they can figure out what it is on their own. Somebody get this kid some orange juice. (High volume of Vitamin C has been found to work as a treatment.)

      • Old Gator - Jul 22, 2012 at 3:42 PM

        Eh. Just by coincidence, I read somewhere last week that the National Progeria Association was looking for yet another chairperson. I guess it just stuck in my mind or something.

  5. parasonic - Jul 21, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    Harper hit a PH single through SS and 3B on an 0-2 count with 2 outs in the bottom of the 8th. Hobbled back to the base after rounding 1st. then stole 2nd. Espinosa hit a base knock to right and Bryce legged out the score. So much fun to watch even when he is hurt and not starting.

  6. delchef9 - Jul 22, 2012 at 1:19 AM

    Trout is legit 5-tool player……Harper is simply a decent hitter…….end of debate!!

    • jon623 - Jul 22, 2012 at 12:02 PM

      Prove it.

  7. jon623 - Jul 22, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    How about we just embrace the fact that these two young men are BOTH emerging as fantastic talent, and that professional baseball is going to be in good hands for a while. Lets just sit back, watch them grow and love every second of it instead of fighting about who’s better or not. Time will tell, guys. They’re just getting started. Once they’ve been in the league for five years or so, THEN we can start looking at a nice sample size and start making some comparissons.

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