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Harper out indefinitely but avoids ligament tear

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Harper out indefinitely but avoids ligament tearNats GM says Harper has ‘significant’ bone bruise (1:20)
Mike Rizzo is hopeful Washington’s star can return before season’s end after avoiding major ligament damage while hyperextending his left knee. (1:20)

11:20 AM ET news services

Bryce Harper does not have any ligament or tendon damage in his injured left knee, but the Washington Nationals star outfielder will be out indefinitely because of a significant bone bruise.

Players have lost significant time, and the equipment could be the cause. MLB and the union need to explore the issue because they can’t afford not to.

The Nationals are optimistic that Harper will return at some point this season, general manager Mike Rizzo said.
“We dodged a bullet here,” said Rizzo, who also noted that it was “pretty remarkable” that Harper avoided a more significant injury to the ligaments or tendon in his knee.
Harper suffered the injury when he slipped on a wet first base in the first inning of Saturday’s 3-1 win over the San Francisco Giants. While running out a ground ball to the right side of the infield, Harper avoided contract with first baseman Ryder Jones before his left foot slipped on the base. Harper’s leg buckled, he went airborne, and he fell to the ground as his helmet went flying.
Rizzo said the Nationals will be cautious in Harper’s recovery process but emphasized that the team expects him to return before the end of the season.
The Nationals are expected to activate outfielder Michael Taylor before Sunday’s doubleheader against the Giants. Taylor hasn’t played since July 6 because of a right oblique strain.
Saturday’s game began just after 10 p.m., following a three-hour rain delay. It was raining steadily when Harper’s injury happened.
Washington’s title hopes hinge largely on Harper’s health. The 2015 MVP is having another spectacular season, hitting .326 with 29 home runs and 87 RBIs this season.
The Nationals enter Sunday with a 14½-game lead in the National League East.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Harper out indefinitely but avoids ligament tear


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