Thursday, June 6, 2013

Harper to see Dr. Andrews for knee

Photo by USA Today
[Updated 5:14 p.m.]

Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper will seek a second opinion on his swollen left knee from Dr. James Andrews, manager Davey Johnson revealed on Thursday.

“The negative news is that Bryce did a little running in the water and his knee has been swelling up,” Johnson said. “He’s going to see Andrews on Monday. He’s probably not going to be available to come off when he’s supposed to come off.”

Harper was placed on the 15-day disabled list on June 1 (retroactive to May 27) with left knee bursitis. He was supposed to come off the DL on Tuesday.

"We haven’t been real successful with our treatment here," Johnson said. "He constantly gets treatment here, but we’ve got to get that inflammation out of there."

Harper hurt the knee originally in Atlanta on April 29 while crashing into the fence in right field. Matters then became much worse weeks later on May 13 at Dodger Stadium when Harper collided violently with the wall in right field. He then aggravated the injury several times while sliding and fouling off a pitch against the Phillies on May 26, the last game he appeared in.

Harper tried to play through the pain in nine games after the incident in L.A., eventually realizing it required a stint on the DL. Harper is now taking the long view with the injury, saying he intends to come back only when he is 100 percent.

I’m not going to rush it. I’m going to take as much time as I can to get right. I want to get back in this lineup 100 percent. I don’t want back in it at 80 percent,” he said.

“I’m trying to get as much treatment as I can, try to stay off of it, not do anything, run or anything like that. Just try to stay off it as much as I can.”

Johnson said the team is concerned, but will not comment on any surgery possibilities yet. Harper is also not expected to have the knee drained as there is currently not enough fluid in there to do so.

“Everybody says it’s bursitis,” Johnson said. “I thought if he took some anti-inflammatory it would calm it down, but it’s kind of been lingering. When he runs it swells up. He was jogging in the pool it swelled up from that. We’re concerned so we’ll get another opinion on it.”

One possibility Johnson acknowledged was Harper getting the bursa sac removed. His bursitis is due to swelling in the bursa sac in his left knee.

“There have been cases where they take the bursa sac out and that’s probably two or three weeks down,” Johnson said. “That's usually the last resort.”

Harper has appeared in 44 games this season and leads the Nationals in batting average (.287), home runs (12), runs (29), and OPS (.973). Washington is 4-12 without Harper in the lineup.


78 comments:

Tcostant said...

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

Alphabet Soup Erik said...

How long until pitchers and catchers report?

JD said...


This sucks !!!

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

I thought thete was no structual damage. Dr. andewsis about structual problems.

Lesson. don't run into wall whether on purpose or accident.

His absense now is quite apparent and we need him back to be competitive

baseballswami said...

Just operate on him right now . Enough already. And in other news- Espi had a magical Zim shot and will be doing baseball activities in five days . Oh, goody.

El Zángano Azul said...

This will end well... From the Razzball glossary: Dr. Freeze – Nickname for Dr. James Andrews as anyone going to see him is going to be on ice for 12-18 months. Brandon Webb went to Dr. Freeze in 2009 and he’s still not fully thawed.

Tcostant said...

Soup - thanks for making me laugh.

NatsLady said...

Xavier Cedeno called up, according to WaPo.

David Proctor said...

I still don't think it's a ligament and the Nats don't either. Sounds like the worst case scenario is having the bursa sac removed, which would sideline him for a month or two (plus rehab starts).

Per Dan Kolko:

Harper was asked if he'd consider getting a cortisone shot in his knee. Said no. Doesn't want that in his body. "Not gonna do that at 20."

Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

There could be worse news...the Russians could be in Newark...runaway inflation...No, come to think of it, this is worse. I'm trying to stay positive:
I'm positive I'm depressed.

NatsLady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
NatsLady said...

Kid is wiser than his years. Is that true about Danny or were you kiddding, swami? Hard to keep up.

David Proctor said...

Danny is indeed getting a cortisone shot in his hand.

JaneB said...

Well this takes the wind right out of my sails. Why the heck are they waiting till Monday? I don't get it. It's not like there's something better for him to do and it's not like Andrews could be SO BUSY he can't see Bryce Harper like, tomorrow.

Sunshine and Soup, you BOTH made me laugh.Ish.

Without this kid in the line up, we do not do well. Heartburn commencing before the first pitch. Before I'm even in the CAR to go SEE the first pitch.

JD said...


JaneB,

I was wondering that myself. In fact I don't know why he didn't go to Andrews as soon as he was diagnosed just to confirm.

Time for FOF to put this team on his shoulders for a few weeks.

JD said...


Danny continues to big pig headed. The cortisone shot won't cure his injuries and the longer he waits to really fix the problem the bigger the likelihood that he'l jeopardize playing time beyond this year.

NatsLady said...

JD, Scott BOras ought to just smash that hand. Y'know, like a locker.

JayB said...

Heard Mark on 980 today say just what I had been saying for some time. Rizzo and Davey are both very arrogant and the rest of baseball are enjoying this season being flushed.

Arrogant is not that bad...what is really killing the team in Pig Headed, stubbornest about "our guys" who can not hit .150....we have several pitchers that are more likely to get on base than Roger, Danny, Chad, Moore.....that is the real problem with this team. Those guys need to be DFAed or Send down.

ExposedinDC said...

Remind me again, who is the Nationals team doctor...Suess or Doolittle

EmDash said...

Sending those guys down or releasing/DFAing in Tracy/Bernadina's case) will make us feel better, but will it actually help much beyond very marginally? With Harper, Ramos, Strasburg and Detwiler out, and Haren underperforming (and I know people want to dump him, but we don't exactly have starting pitcher depth coming out of our ears) the team's going to struggle, and unless a bizarre freak event happens and someone like Gattis comes out of nowhere no minor league call up in the world is going to change that.

JayB said...

again...not that I am smart or right that often but another huge issue on this team is the training staff and worse the medical team.

Mark could you please take a hard look at the long and well documented list of failed medical diagnosis this team has become famous for and use some contacts around baseball to get some insight into what surely seems to be a structural issue or skill issue with the medical/training staff

Section 222 said...

I'm pretty sure a cortisone shot is good treatment for bursitis. I had one in my hip and it cleared it right up in a matter of days. Hope Bryce gets some good medical advice from Dr. A. As long as you don't overdo the cortisone, it's not dangerous.

baseballswami said...

NatsLady -- true about Danny. Had a shot of the big C and can resume baseball activities in five days. And I will not comment further.

baseballswami said...

In his wrist -- not his shoulder.

baseballswami said...

Another question for you-- how can you tell if one of the Nats is lying about how he feels?? His lips are moving.

EmDash said...

I think the general thinking is that one shot of cortisone can be fine. But if you have to have multiple shots over time rather than fixing the damage it can cause you to redamage it worse - I was worried about Zimm's shoulder last season, because of that. I don't know if that's the case with bursitis, but, well, who knows if they've been entirely straight-forward about the nature of the problem, right?

Clip&Store said...

I second what alphabet soup eric said..

how long til p&c report?

NanoCat said...

Wait- is this the same Dr. Andrews who cleared RGIII to play on the sidelines last winter, ALLOWED HIM TO GET SERIOUSLY INJURED IN THE FIRST PLACE, then did surgery on him and is now calling him "superhuman"? Yes, Nats fans, be afraid- be very afraid.

Alphabet Soup Erik said...

Bryce Harper...your 2014 Opening Day 1B...have to get him out of the outfield, and he used to be a catcher, so I'm sure he can handle 1B.

Caps Fan said...

"JayB said...

Heard Mark on 980 today say just what I had been saying for some time. Rizzo and Davey are both very arrogant and the rest of baseball are enjoying this season being flushed."

I seriously doubt that Mark Zuckerman called Davey Johnson or Mike Rizzo arrogant on air. Does 980 archive their stream and can you provide a link?

JD said...


Erik,

Yes but you'd be wasting that arm.

NatsNutty said...

Espi is PETRIFIED that he will be replaced by Rendon at second base and is desperate to return to the lineup at any cost. Frankly, I don't think even cortisone shots will turn around Espi's already bleak season.

JayB said...

he did indeed....again as many of you know....but do not agree with me.......I know baseball and I know the truth....others will back it up.

baseballswami said...

Can you get a cortisone shot in your eyes?

Mr Baseball said...

We talk about pitching and building the farm system. Why did we trade a good prospect (Alex Meyer) for Span. I feel Harper could have developed into a very good CF. I thought then we made a mistake signing Soriano and losing our #1 draft pick. You don't lose your #1 picks and expect to build a good farm system. I don't see the Cardinals during this and they have one of the best farm systems. Also, I would fine anyone who slides into a base head first (except 1st base on a pick off). Sliding head first is what started Zimmerman's shoulder problems and this helped to make Harper's injury worse. Why can't players learn to slide feet first and most don't know how to hook slide today.

Caps Fan said...

"JayB said...

he did indeed....again as many of you know....but do not agree with me.......I know baseball and I know the truth....others will back it up."

Fine. Let them check in here and back you up, or provide a link to the stream, or get Mark himself to come on here and admit he said that. Because it is totally uncharacteristic with the way he presents himself on this blog or on his other on-air appearances for him to say such things on the record.

David Proctor said...

" I thought then we made a mistake signing Soriano and losing our #1 draft pick. You don't lose your #1 picks and expect to build a good farm system."

This was difficult for me. I really didn't want to give up the pick, but if you think you're a closer away, you have to make the move. Soriano has been good for us, but the rest of the team hasn't held up the bargain. In hindsight, maybe not a good move. At the time, I get it.

JayB said...

In context he was talking about why so many outside DC and elsewhere inside baseball are taking such pleasure in Nats flushing their season. He talked out the Strass shut down...Davey WS or Bust comments over and over and Rizzo and Davey being known as arrogant.

David Proctor said...

Saying that Davey and Rizzo are known as being arrogant is different than saying they are arrogant. That's not semantics, that's a big difference.

Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

Does a cortisone shot help you hit the curve ball?
If it doesn't, Espi's career is still shot.

NatsLady said...

Mr. Baseball, that's funny. Denard Span NEVER slides hands first and rarely dives for a ball. He (and Werth) are the best models for a guy like Harper because they know from experience. So we should be glad to have him (Span, I mean).

karlkolchak said...

@Mr. Baseball - two points:

1). The Nats' lower level pitching prospects by and large are doing quite well this year, so losing Meyer does not appear to be as big of a concern. As for position player prospects, that's another story entirely.

2). Giving up the 29th overall pick is not that big of a deal. In fact, none of the four guys taken at #29 from 2004-2007, whom you would have expected to have made the majors by now if they are ever going to, have played a single MLB contest.

There is a lot that ails this team, but it isn't the Span and Soriano moves that are killing them.

Candide said...

I've gotten to the point where whenever a Nat is injured, even if it's a shaving nick or rampant dandruff, I figure him to be gone for a month.

Unlike some, I'm not in the prediction business - smarter guys than me have that market cornered - but I have a bad feeling we won't see Strasburg again this month.

NatsLady said...

Stephania Bell said she believes Stras will be back in two weeks. She didn't comment on Harper.

Timothy Folk said...

Nobody in any sport comes back with a clean bill of health from dr andrews.. WWE/NFL/NBA... get the surgery and call up Goodwin.. praying for bryce

Eric said...
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JayB said...

when I get time I will find the link but he went on from the context I gave to say Rizzo was arrogant.

Eric said...

Davey Johnson arrogantly critiques his own coaching efforts (paraphrasing numerous quotes):
"I haven't done a very good job managing so far this season".

Can you believe the bloated, festering ego of this guy? Sheesh.

"Danny continues to [be] pig headed."

Can you please diagnose the mindset I have for thinking that comment is ridiculous? You probably know me better than him due to reading my thoughts (assuming you do) almost daily so I'll be sure to take it to the bank ;)

Anyway, I'm really disappointed for Davey and Espi causing Harper's knee problems. They should really know better.

Rabbit34 said...

Good luck Bryce. Make sure he knows he's looking at a knee and not an elbow.

Rabbit34 said...

Unfortunately, I think Harper is going to require surgery and not play the rest of the season.

JayB said...

http://www.stationcaster.com/player_skinned.php?s=65&c=426&f=1498201

Check out around 6 mins....it clearly is there.....Yes Davey and Rizzo are arrogant.

JayB said...

Davey saying he is at fault is just fishing for people to say "oh Davey, no no your are the best.....He needs his ego stroked far to much

David Proctor said...

"Davey saying he is at fault is just fishing for people to say "oh Davey, no no your are the best.....He needs his ego stroked far to much"

So he's arrogant if he doesn't admit fault and he's arrogant if he does admit fault. Hilarious.

JayB said...

David...sorry to put facts into the picture....but Mark said it and you can listen....and if you do not recognize what Davey is doing than consider yourself blissfully clueless. You could look it up in the DSM 5.

natsfan1a said...

Eesh. Never like to hear that they're going to see Dr. Andrews.

Section 222 said...

Mark was reporting on the animosity around the league towards the Nats, prompted by the Strasburg shutdown. Apparently, the Mets announcers last night were making fun of Rizzo having justified the shutdown in part that the Nats have the ability to be great for years to come, so they didn't need to go all out to win.

In the course of that discussion, Mark said, "Is Mike Rizzo a little arrogant? Yes. Davey Johnson is too. That rubs people the wrong way. Bigger picture, what they’ve done in the last five years is remarkable. And they've done it the right way."

So Mark wasn't being critical of Rizzo and Davey when he said they were arrogant. But he did say it. And he thinks it's interesting how many people around the league dislike the Nats. Listen to the tape yourselves.

JayB, as you might expect, I completely agree about the need for some reporting on the Nats medical staff. And I also agree that Davey most likely doesn't really think that he's at fault for his players' failures. I don't think he's fishing for ego-stroking though. It's more like he's saying what he thinks he should say as a leader to try to take some of the pressure off them.

But one thing we know for sure, you need to take everything he says with a big grain of salt. Just a week ago he was saying Espi would be fine. He and Rizzo must have had conversations about how long they were going to give him before bringing up Rendon. I don't really blame him for not being candid, but we need to be careful not to put much stock into those kinds of interviews.

Eric said...

"Unfortunately, I think Harper is going to require surgery and not play the rest of the season."

If it's to remove a bursae it won't be season ending.

"You could look it up in the DSM 5."

Can you quote the sections on Internet psychopathology? Thanks.

Eric said...

Ah, so Mark was taken out of context on a matter of opinion about someone's personality. Got it.

Caps Fan said...

Personally I have no problem with a manager or GM being a little arrogant. I bet if you asked other MLB GMs for words that describe Rizzo or Davey, arrogant might show up. But probably not in the top 10. And come to think of it, you know what you call a manager who's not at least a little arrogant? Jim Riggleman.

Eric said...

Er regarding removing bursae, I shouldn't say it "won't" be season ending, just that it "shouldn't" be based on what I've read about the procedure.

DJB said...

From what I know about knees, he was showing lack of stability earlier. I think he's done for this year, and his career trajectory is going to be radically altered. I think we need to consider a trade. The most likely result will be repetitive injury. The Front Office should be fired en masse.

SonnyG10 said...

Section 222 said...

...But one thing we know for sure, you need to take everything he [Davey] says with a big grain of salt. Just a week ago he was saying Espi would be fine. He and Rizzo must have had conversations about how long they were going to give him before bringing up Rendon. I don't really blame him for not being candid, but we need to be careful not to put much stock into those kinds of interviews.
June 06, 2013 7:13 PM


Amen to that, Deuces.

DJB said...

I've really not seen a young player as mismanaged as Bryce has been. He clearly had problems with reckless play going back last year, yet they shifted his positions at will. Harper is not just a player, but a significant business asset for this young organization. Really, this is where the Lerner's are going to need to really take control. This is a business issue at this point, and some tough businessmen are going to need to call Rizzo and Davey to the carpet on this one. You squander an asset like this in the real world and you get fired.

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

From what I know about knees, he was showing lack of stability earlier.

OK, I'm bored enough--I'll bite. What *do* you know about knees?

Candide said...

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

From what I know about knees, he was showing lack of stability earlier.

OK, I'm bored enough--I'll bite. What *do* you know about knees?


Yeah, I'd like to know that, too.

And how was he "showing lack of stability"?

DJB said...

Only that his knee bent just like RGIII's did during the Seattle game while taking a small secondary lead at second base. The lateral ligaments, not the bursa sac, keep the knee from collapsing in such situations. You can hope that the bursitis caused a certain degree of instability, but it is not likely.

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

OK, that could be significant, or not. I don't know. My whole qualifications for making diagnoses is that I've had two knees my whole life. I do know some people are more flexible than others.

I speak French, but that doesn't make me Joan of Arc.

Eric said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eric said...

I was a little concerned when swinging (rotational force) hurt his knee but sprinting didn't...

But my personal knowledge of knee anatomy can be reviewed in full in Wikipedia and a couple of news articles. I also know next to nothing about Harper's actual injury so I'm not about to call for trading him or to predict the alteration of his career trajectory...

DJB said...

My concern long-term is that his swing puts so much pressure on his lead knee that he will lose significant power even if he does get this problem fixed. Without his power, Harper is still a good player, but not the generational talent he could be. Again, he played too reckless, and this was compounded by mismanagement from Davey and Rizzo who had him learning new positions on the fly.

NatsJack in Florida said...

You guys are talking way over yoir heads.

It's baseball played by people who have played the game all there lives. Bryce had played several games at CF at the Jr. college in Las Vegas. He also played shortstop.

Pretty silly comments.

Caps Fan said...

DJB, Harper didn't get hurt because the Nats had him play all three outfield positions. He got hurt because he fought the wall and the wall won. All three outfield walls are undefeated. Left, center and right.

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

DJB may be premature in his assessment of Harper's durability, but his point is relevant. Nobody's immortal, nobody's unbreakable.

The Fisher said...

UGH! The baseball gods don't like teams claiming to be WS material in training camp. Anything can happen-and it has.
Harper is right to get a second opinion-the Nats medical training staff can not be trusted.

Laddie Blah Blah said...

I am upset about Harper. I am upset that MLB baseball does not mandate padding in the OF wall from foul pole to foul pole. With all the money teams are making these days, can't they do without the advertising revenue from a hazardous obstacle, an ugly, glorified billboard on the field of play?

The kid should not have been injured trying to make the kind of play OFers make as a matter of routine almost every day the game is played. How many times have we seen OFers crash into the padding after making a play, or trying to make a play, and then get up and trot back to position as if nothing had happened? Bryce happened to have had 2 collisions where he wasn't protected by padding.

"Harper was asked if he'd consider getting a cortisone shot in his knee. Said no. Doesn't want that in his body. "Not gonna do that at 20.""

The kid is watching out for himself and his future. Like everyone else, I am hoping like hell that it is not serious. If he has to be shut down to get well, then so be it. He is at least as valuable to the Nats as Strasburg, and to MLB, as well.

This should never have happened. Mike Trout made that spectacular, leaping grab last year, that we have all seen, and banged off the OF wall, just as Harp did in Atlanta and LA, and Mike never missed a beat, nor a game, and never changed his aggressive defensive style. I blame the managements of the Braves and Dodgers for creating the hazardous working conditions that damaged one of the game's brightest stars.

And for what?

Sec. 3, My Sofa said...

I am upset that MLB baseball does not mandate padding in the OF wall from foul pole to foul pole.

I don't disagree, but personally, I'm more worried about liners into the stands, and broken bats. I'd like to see the screen extend out from behind home plate into the outfield, like it does in BP, and in other countries as a matter of course. Yeah, maybe some swell won't get a foul ball. And maybe some kid won't get half a bat in his chest.

Candide said...

Caps Fan said...All three outfield walls are undefeated. Left, center and right.

Well, not quite undefeated...

Scott Margenau said...

Laddie Blah Blah said...
I am upset about Harper. I am upset that MLB baseball does not mandate padding in the OF wall from foul pole to foul pole. With all the money teams are making these days, can't they do without the advertising revenue from a hazardous obstacle, an ugly, glorified billboard on the field of play?


The diff is Bryce ran full speed into the wall and didn't even see it. Crashing against all wall as u time your jump to make a catch is completely different. He has to be more aware.

Hope he gets well soon.

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