Bryce Harper Returns
Bryce Harper teased the news on Monday afternoon on Instagram, and then word came an hour or so later from multiple sources. 

The two-time National League MVP will make his 2023 debut on Tuesday, 160 days since undergoing Tommy John surgery. 

The original timetable for Harper's return was around the All-Star break; he will beat that timetable by nearly 2 1/2 months. 

Harper met with Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Monday, the prominent orthopedic surgeon that performed his Tommy John surgery in November. 

“[Harper is] pretty geeked up about getting out there and playing,” Phillies manager Rob Thomson told reporters on Sunday in Houston. “He’s itching.” 

Harper will be the designated hitter on Tuesday night at Dodger Stadium. He still needs to complete a throwing program before he can play on the diamond, so the plan is for him to continue participating in pregame drills at first base with the thought he can provide some lineup flexibility as the regular season winds down. 

Harper has been facing live pitching for weeks, so the Phillies decided against sending him to the minors for a traditional rehab assignment. 

"What Harper has done is unbelievable," said one rival NL scout. "That injury sidelines the best athletes for months, and here he is having missed roughly 25 to 30 regular season games. 

"Honestly, it's unheard of. Freakish."
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