Bryce Harper’s injury casts a shadow over the Phillies’ 2023 plans

If there’s a bottom line to the news of Bryce Harper’s Tommy John surgery announcement, it’s that the Phillies have been through this before.

It was late June when Harper suffered a broken thumb after being hit by a pitch, causing him to miss two months and 52 games on the injured list. That was about six weeks after an MRI revealed a tear in his right UCL, which forced him into permanent designated hitter duties.

None of that has slowed Harper down while he’s been in the lineup, and the hope from the Phillies’ perspective is that the process won’t affect his game-changing presence in the batter’s box. However, the uphill climb back to the Fall Classic just got decidedly steeper.

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