Instead: it's a bone bruise, but all of his ligaments are intact.
Harper has been placed on the disabled list and there is no timetable for his return, but his prognosis is nearly certainly better than the worst fears from Saturday night.
Based on examinations and results of an MRI, the team said it's possible Harper will play again this season, which prompted a sigh of relief throughout the clubhouse, front office and fan base.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, "I don't know what happened really".
The Nats now hold a 14-game lead in the National League East and have the third best record in baseball overall, so even if they lose Harper for the rest of the regular season, it's not likely they fall to the bottom of the rankings. "That's baseball. We have to roll with that". This season, Harper's hitting.327/.420/.616 with 29 home runs, 87 RBI and 92 runs scored. He is the anchor of the Nationals' lineup and has led them to a 68-45 mark, best in the NL East. It's tough for both teams and both teams played a good game. "This is a 40-, 50-man operation and you have to rely on great scouting to bring the players and great development to get these guys ready to play at an optimal level in a pennant race for the Washington Nationals, which is not easy". And shortly after the game starter, Harper's injury reminded the clubs of the danger of playing in harsh conditions.
Harper was walking around without a limp after the game, which is definitely a good sign, but ACL injuries are tricky in that sometimes they can go nearly completely unnoticed.
"Today was definitely one of those, dig-deep-and-see-what-you-made-of days", Jackson said.