Monday came and went without the Phillies making a splashy move, but that doesn’t mean there was no exciting news. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Scott Lauber reported that reigning MVP Bryce Harper had pins removed from his surgically repaired left thumb and should start hitting soon.
This is huge news for a Phillies squad that has surprisingly kept its head above water without one of the best players in the game. Harper broke his left thumb in late June when he was struck on the hand by an errant fastball from Padres lefty Blake Snell. Many considered the injury to be a death blow for the underachieving Phillies, but the fightin’ Phils were able to claw their way into a playoff spot despite the loss.
It’s perfect timing for Harper to have the pins removed, as second baseman Jean Segura is reportedly returning from a broken finger of his own later this week. If the duo comes back at full strength it’ll go a long way towards solidifying the Phillies’ playoff hopes.
As for the Phillies as a whole, the trade deadline isn’t until Tuesday at 6:00 PM, meaning President of Baseball Operations David Dombrowski still has until then to make any upgrades. The team has been linked mostly to starting pitchers, but could also stand to improve in center field as well as adding some bullpen depth. Given the exorbitant prospect packages we’ve seen change hands over the past few days, it seems as though the Phillies won’t land any big fish. However, there are still some improvements to be made around the margins before 6 o’clock tomorrow.