Bryce Harper was back in the Nationals lineup today, so the star outfielder seems recovered from yesterday’s collision with Derek Dietrich. Harper was removed in the first inning of the 3-0 win over the Marlins after colliding with Dietrich on the basepaths. Despite some dizziness and hip soreness, Harper passed concussion tests after the game and seemed no worse for the wear Monday, as he’s collected two hits (including a homer) and a walk in his first four plate appearances against the Phillies. Needless to say, losing Harper for any length of time would’ve erased the Nats’ fading hopes of getting back in the playoff race. Here’s the latest on some more serious injury news from around baseball…
- Carlos Gomez will miss the Astros’ four-game series with the Rangers with a left intercostal strain, GM Jeff Luhnow told reporters (including Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle) though the strain isn’t though to be too serious. Gomez suffered the injury during batting practice yesterday and underwent an MRI today to access the damage.
- Joe Panik is likely to miss the rest of the season due to ongoing back problems, Giants manager Bruce Bochy told reporters, including CSNBayArea.com’s Alex Pavlovic). “The odds lean more toward the season being over for him,” Bochy said. “I talked to him yesterday. He didn’t really feel a lot of improvement. He’s going to need some rest. I would be surprised if he plays, unless things work out really, really well and we get to October.” Panik has only played in three games since August 1 due to his bad back, bringing a sour end to an otherwise tremendous season for the second baseman, as he hit .312/.378/.455 over 432 PA. Panik’s status was a reason the Giants exploded trading for Chase Utley in August, though rookie Kelby Tomlinson has played very well as Panik’s replacement.
- In other Giants injury news, Bochy also wasn’t sure if Hunter Pence would be able to return from an oblique strain. “It may get to the point where we may feel it’s not worth the risk. I don’t mean to be negative, but we have to be smart about this,” Bochy said. Pence began taking dry swings today but there’s no indication about when he’ll start live batting practice.