Among the 15 major league games on the 3rd (Korean time), the match that the media focused on was the match between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The reason is that designated hitter Bryce Harper (30), who underwent left elbow ligament surgery (Tommy John surgery) after the end of last year’s season, played in the first game of the 2023 season. Harper, who played in 31 games of the season, is returning 160 days after surgery. It is the shortest return after elbow ligament surgery in history.
In the meantime, the fastest player to return after Tommy John surgery was Arizona Diamondbacks second baseman Tony Womack in 2003. He returned 182 days after surgery. Seattle Mariners outfielder Jay Buener returned to the field after 207 days. Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels), who underwent surgery in 2018, also returned after 218 days.
Rehabilitation is the key to elbow ligament replacement surgery. However, there is a difference between a fielder and a pitcher. Pitchers basically go through rehabilitation after surgery for well over a year. The purpose of the fielder is to hit rather than throw, and the goal of the pitcher is to maintain the previous velocity and pitch. Toronto Blue Jays Ryu Hyun-jin underwent surgery on June 18 last year. To return to the mound, it is possible only in the second half after going through the All-Star break.
Harper appeared as the designated hitter three times. He did not do off-the-field batting drills before the game. It seems to be conscious of reporters. Agent Scott Boras and other staff were camped out next to the third base dugout before the game. What’s interesting is the return location.
Harper,메이저놀이터 a two-time National League MVP, made his Washington Nationals debut on April 20, 2012 at Dodger Stadium. He was 19 at the time. He went 3-for-1 with 1 hit and 1 RBI. His first game back after his surgery is also at Dodger Stadium. However, in his debut in the 2023 season on this day, he went 0-for-4, including 3 strikeouts. The team also lost 1-13 with only two hits.
Dodgers starter Julio Urias had the only one hit (home run) he gave up to his old teammate Trey Turner. Urias, who had been sluggish with 11 runs in 9 innings in the previous 2 games, went 7 innings, 1 hit, 1 walk, 10 strikeouts and 1 run, and went 4-3 with an ERA of 3.86.
The Dodgers poured in 17 hits, including Freddy Freeman’s fifth home run of the season, and maintained their lead in the district (18-13) with the most wins in a season, five in a row. Following the 13-4 the previous day, he showed off his hot offense, scoring 26 points in only two games. Rookie second baseman Miguel Vargas, placed in the 7th batting order, swung a hard hit with 4 hits and 3 RBIs in 5 at-bats, the most in a single game. Top hitter Mookie Betts is also showing a normal sense of hitting with 3 hits and 3 RBIs in 4 at-bats, following the previous day’s 3 hits and 3 RBIs.