After nearly month on the sidelines, Washington Nationals phenom Bryce Harper will finally take the field again on Tuesday. The young outfielder, who has been battling bursitis in his left knee, is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment at Class A+ Potomac Tuesday evening, reports Tom Schad of MLB.com.
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Harper, 20, expressed concerns over the weekend that a Tuesday return was "kind of early," and added that he would like to play in six or seven games with Potomac before rejoining the Nats, but the club seems to think otherwise. Manager Davey Johnson said that Harper "looked good" swinging the bat in BP on Sunday, and that he probably wouldn't need much playing time before returning to the big-league lineup.
Whether Harper will be on Johnson's speedy timeline or his own slower one likely hinges on whether or not the inflammation in his knee remains dormant.
Harper hurt his knee when he collided with the outfield wall at Dodger Stadium on May 13, and he has aggravated the injury a number of times over the last month. He received a cortisone shot in the knee from Dr. James Andrews a few weeks back, and has been resigned to a walking brace for most of the month.