Sunday, March 03, 2019

Harper already does the right thing on introduction

Bryce Harper's number 34 was synonymous with his own brand for many years, when the possibility existed of him joining the Phillies, a guy who wasn't a Phillie for too long but had left an endearing mark with the team just happened to share that number jersey.

The late Roy Halladay swooped into Phillies history with astounding performances and a tremendous work ethic that lasts and has a special place in the hearts of Phillies fans forever. Halladay's tragic passing in a plane crash was a real shame, Roy's work after he retired from the game, was just starting when it came to baseball after his career.

Roy Halladay's numbers career:

Standard Pitching
Year Age Tm W L W-L% ERA GS IP Awards
16 Y16 Y16 Y203105.6593.383902749.1
162 162 162 179.6593.3833232
TOR TOR TOR 14876.6613.432872046.2
PHI PHI PHI 5529.6553.25103702.2
AL (AL (AL (14876.6613.432872046.2
NL (NL (NL (5529.6553.25103702.2
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 3/3/2019.

When Bryce Harper was introduced officially yesterday, he acknowledged Roy in a way that really touched the hearts of Phillies fans and helped pull him closer into the section reserved for other Phillie players that will be loved forever by the fans. A classy move by him in taking the number 3 jersey for his first year as a Phillies player went a long way to fans who were on the fence about what they perceive to think about Harper.

Harper's signing went down to the wire, many teams were in the running for him, but the Phillies ended up signing him for the rest of his career. Where does Harper sit though among the superstars of baseball? Yes, he's a very good player but let's take a look at his stats so far in his career:

Standard Batting
Year Age Tm G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI Awards
7 Yr7 Yr7 Yr927330661092218318184521
162 162 162 1625781071613233291
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 3/3/2019.

The next few years of Harper's career should even better what we've seen from him so far, and the Phillies plunked down $330M for 13 years based upon that assumption. Yes, Harper is one of the top tier players in the game, but looking at his numbers, they don't overwhelm you with out of the stratosphere type of play like Mike Trout's would. It will be interesting to see what happens in the 2019 season, the forecast is for 27 HR and 87 RBI this year - but some other things that the Phillies needed was a bona fide leader in the club house, maybe Harper will be that guy. He's got plenty of experience and he's got a strong will to win.

Ticket sales jumped upon the signing of Harper, the cash register has already started to ring for the Phillies. They've made some important moves this off-season and if starting pitching holds up, there is no reason to believe they will ascend to first place in the league as they did last year. It's an exciting time for Phillies fans no doubt, the season is a few weeks away from starting but the excitement is starting to build. 

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