It was that May 6th day before summer really got hot that Bryce Harper’s career took off. A three home run game off Tom Koehler, all three of them more majestic than the one before it. Harper entered tonight’s game in Miami with four career bombs off Koehler, and tonight he would get his fifth off the stubborn right-hander.
It would give him sole possession of the National League lead with 28. He would later add another even more Ruthian clout to give him 29. He’s trailing just Albert Pujols and Mike Trout in all of baseball for the home run crown.
Home Run #28 (and his fifth career off Tommy Koehler):
Bryce Harper homered off of a bad man on Saturday afternoon at Nationals Park. It looks like he caught a 93-MPH two-seam fastball tailing over too much of the outer half of the plate, and he deposited it violently off a seat in the right field upper deck.
It was his 27th home run of the season. He’s been homering at a regular pace, but it’s been a bit since he’s hit a moonshot like this.
Clayton Kershaw took the mound for this 4-2 Dodgers win, and it was just one of those incredible days for the Koufax of our era. He had 14 strikeouts in eight shutout innings, getting Harper to go down on strikes three times. By the time the Dodgers brought Kenley Jansen in to mop up the ninth, a ferocious right-handed closer like him probably seemed pretty human to a mutant like Harper.
How would Bryce Harper follow up Saturday’s 23rd home run of the season on Father’s Day? With his 24th of the year off Charlie “Chuck” Morton of course. The Nationals scored nine runs in the first inning and coasted to a 9-2 easy win. This was the swing that got them on the board first.
At end of watch today, Harper was hitting .345 with 24 home runs and 57 RBI. He’s on a 56 home run, 132 RBI pace.
We weren’t expecting much from Bryce Harper today. His season almost ended the other night and he was facing Francisco Liriano who has been the ‘Lights Out’ version lately.
Harper answered the bell, and until the whole Max Scherzer Perfect Game thing took over as the game’s biggest storyline; without a doubt it was Harper’s mammoth home run onto the lawn in center that would have grabbed headlines.
It looked like an 86 MPH slider he hit out to dead center.
I think when Harper got started on this home run binge, a lot of people figured we were seeing the breakout of a tremendous power hitter. As evidenced all year long and by his next at bat when he hit a single through the left side (he uses the whole field often), we are just seeing the development of a great all-around hitter. This is a guy who could pretty easily win a batting title it looks like and someone who perennially could be over the .300 mark.
There’s just no great book on how to get him out, which is why you see some of the hottest pitchers in the league surrendering hits and homers to him regularly.
Now, Bryce Harper is in the big leagues. Last night he hit his 22nd home run of the season off some poor dud named Niefenhauser in a 16-4 Nationals win.
A couple footnotes on this homer. It tied his career high of 22 in a season. It nearly landed in that pool out in right center at the ballpark in Tampa. And he gave Dick Vitale knuckles after rounding the bases.
He’s wearing us out with this homer stuff.
After a 3 for 3 game, his average is now up to .346 on the year.
The ball absolutely flies in Miller Park when the roof is shut.
Mike Fiers had his curveball working last night. I had this one on and he had close to ‘A’ stuff for the first time all year last night. But Fiers made the critical mistake to the best young hitter in baseball, and Bryce Harper gets into it to the point that his back leg comes completely off the ground. It flies out of Miller Park for his 21st home run of the season, and the 76th of his career.
Bryce Harper through 60 games has 51 walks (with 51 strikeouts), a .333/.469/.721 slash line for an OPS of 1.190. He is on pace for about 57 home runs.
Bryce Harper never had the chance to homer at historic Yankee Stadium. But today, in his first game in the Bronx, he added Masahiro Tanaka to his wall of Big Game pelts. He added Yankee Stadium to his list of parks homered in. His blast to center tied the game at 1-1, and was the only run the Nationals would score off Tanaka.
And my father in law called tonight, he’s a Yankees fan. He was with my wife and daughter about an hour from Yankee Stadium on the east coast. He said he was going to watch the game and take a good look at Harper – and he mentioned that Harper may someday be a Yankee. Although Harper was non-committal at any stance in this New York Post article, he has stated many time before that he hopes to be a National his entire career.
You can’t blame the guy for loving Mickey Mantle and the history surrounding the Yankees though!
It seemed like it had been a little while since Bryce Harper homered in a game – in actuality it had only been about seven games played. He’s still killing the ball, hitting over .330 playing every day. Today, Jason Hammel had his ‘A’ game and carried his start into the ninth inning at Nationals Park in DC.
It was a shot to the opposite field that didn’t need wind, just like Harper said when the series started. It was his 18th home run of the 2015 season, this time he was the one tying Nelson Cruz (who earlier in the afternoon hit his 18th of the season as well) – how many times have these two guys homered on the same day this year?
We continue to marvel at the power Bryce Harper has to the opposite field. He’s now on pace for 62 home runs on the season.
.@Bharper3407's 13 home runs this month are the most in a single month in #Nats history (2005-pres). Alfonso Soriano had 12 in May, 2006.
Winds were flying out at about 17 MPH on Tuesday night, when Harper came to bat against Kyle Hendricks who held a 1-0 lead. Harper gets a ball in the air with some backspin, it looks like your garden-variety pop out; and Harper shucks his bat aside in disgust. Except, look at Coghlan the left-fielder. He just keeps drifting and the ball keeps going.
It lands in the bleachers for Harper’s 17th home run of the season and 12th in May. It is referred to as a ‘towering home run’ by the guys doing the play by play.
This tied the game at 1-1, and the Nationals would add one on a Denard Span home run to make it 2-1. And then Kris Bryant hit one out to tie the game. From there, Addison Russell would win it in the bottom of the ninth with a gapper. Nice little ballgame with a couple homers from the young stars.
Bryce Harper’s home runs are piling up so quickly that you actually begin to forget them all. What you don’t forget is that he owns this sloppy right-hander from Philadelphia named O’Sullivan.
It would be the third home run that Bryce Harper has hit off O’Sullivan this season.
Bryce Harper is completely dominating right now. What you don’t see on the video clip is he had a pretty good at-bat against O’Sullivan prior to hitting this screaming line drive out the direct other way in Washington (not a hitter’s park), and this isn’t a towering home run or anything. But if a left-handed hitter hitting a line drive to left field for a single is a ‘nice piece of hitting’, what is it when he hits that line to left field and it goes 380 feet?
As for the game – these Nationals are pretty exciting to watch. They have won 18 of their last 22 games. If you have been paying attention, they have shown you they can win the 2-1 with brilliant pitching from a Max Scherzer or they can slug it out with you and win 10-8 if their starter lets them down. They aren’t at full strength, but they are very, very good.
As for baseball handicapping, we were confident enough in the Nationals last night to bet them at -270 odds. If you had them at an online betting sportsbook like CarbonSports.ag you would have received a line similar to this that pays you $100 for that $270 bet.
How do you begin the week after you have been named National League Player of the Week for two consecutive weeks (he’s just the 10th player in Major League history to achieve this feat)? You hit a home run against your favorite boyhood team.
Bryce Harper was clearly looking fastball from Nate Eovaldi, but it didn’t matter in the end. It wasn’t the longest home run Bryce Harper has hit, but it definitely was impressive. Harper gets bat to the ball on an offspeed pitch down in the zone, and the pitch lands in the front row of right-center field at Nationals Park.
This was the 15th home run of Harper’s 2015 season. My daughter, who is six months old today; sat calmly on my lap just before her bedtime to watch this at-bat of Harper’s against who my wife says is her favorite team, the Yankees. In the first baseball season of her life; through 40 team games played, Bryce Harper is on a 61-home run pace.
The Nationals won the game 8-6 in extra innings on a Ryan Zimmerman walk-off home run.