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Thursday, June 5, 2014
Bryce Harper won't rush return

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Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper said Thursday there is still no timetable for his return from a torn thumb ligament.

Bryce Harper
Bryce Harper did light workouts this week but has not targeted a return date from thumb surgery.

"If it takes me till after the All-Star break or a month after the All-Star break, then it's going to take me that long," Harper told reporters. "I'm not going to rush back. I'm not going to do anything stupid. I'm just going to see how I feel and go from there."

Harper, 21, injured his left thumb sliding into third base during a game on April 25. He underwent surgery four days later to repair a torn ligament, and reportedly was projected then to be out until at least July. Manager Matt Williams said Wednesday he is hopeful Harper can return by July 1. 

Harper has done light fielding work this week but said he still can't catch a baseball with his glove on and has not taken two-handed swings yet. 

"I'm just going to take as much time as I can to be where I need to be," Harper said, "to be 100 percent or close to 100 percent when I come back so I can help this team."

Harper was batting .289 with one home run and nine RBIs in 22 games when he got hurt. Entering Thursday night, Harper had missed 33 games with the injury (35 overall). He missed 44 games last season, his second in the majors, with a left knee injury.