The big question on every Washington Nationals fan’s mind right now is if 19-year-old baseball phenom Bryce Harper can make it to the majors and rejuvenate the team.
Harper doesn’t lack the tools to be a successful MLB player. He possesses good size for his position, has loads of strength from head to toe and surprising athleticism for his 6’ 3”, 225-pound body. Harper possesses amazing power with every hit, with each one making a loud shot off the bat. His game is well-rounded and he has a polished set of tools to pair with his phenomenal athleticism.
After singing, Harper was immediately sent to the Nationals’ Class-A minor league team, the Hagerstown Suns. He completely blew away the competition by hitting 14 home runs and also having a .318 batting average. He was quickly sent to the Double-A Harrisburg Senators. Harper cooled down a little, only hitting three home runs and hitting .256 in 37 games.
And what comes with his young age is a little immaturity. He was suspended or ejected from games in the earlier part of his minor league career. By nature Harper is an intense competitor. Sometimes you can see how his emotions take control on the field, which can lead to displays that anger opponents.
To answer the question as to whether Harper can make it to the majors: Only if he can have a very good spring training performance (Harper’s Spring Training stats as of March 8: through four games he’s hitting .455 with zero extra-base hits, a walk and two strikeouts).
I do believe, along with every other fan, that Harper is a once in a lifetime prospect with unbelievable upside and talent. I could see him making many All-Star games and possibly hitting 50-plus homeruns. If I had to compare Harper to any player in the MLB now I would say a young Jason Giambi.
Still, it goes without saying that there are numerous difficulties that even the best prospects have had to overcome. I expect Harper’s road to the big leagues will be no different than any other major leaguer that had big expectations like he does. I expect when he does get there, in the very near future, he could be a very good player for a very long time in this league.