Bryce Harper will make his Phillies debut as the designated hitter for Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays. Here’s how you can watch.
A week after Bryce Harper’s introductory press conference with the Phillies, he will make his spring training debut with the team. Harper is scheduled to be the designated hitter in Saturday’s contest against the Blue Jays.
Harper is only expected to get one or two plate appearances during the game per Todd Zolecki of MLB.com, so if you plan to watch, you better be watching once it starts.
Here is everything you need to know about the game:
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Date: March 9, 2018
First Pitch: 1:05 PM EST
Location: Clearwater, FL
Stadium: Spectrum Field
Pitchers: Jake Arrieta (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Matt Shoemaker (0-0, 5.79 ERA)
Radio Station: 94 WIP
TV Channel: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Live Stream: NBC Sports Philadelphia (subscribers only), MLB Network
Harper will get his first playing time in the field Monday against the Rays, again in Clearwater. Zolecki notes that Harper is only expected to get one or two plate appearances in that game as well.
From there we should start to see Harper more consistent with Opening Day now less than three weeks away.
The hope is that his late start to spring training won’t negatively impact him when the regular season rolls around. He might get more playing time than other starters at this point to catch up.
Arrieta will hope to continue his early success this spring. He threw three perfect innings with four strikeouts in his spring debut, throwing just 33 pitches altogether. While anything done in spring training has to be taken with a grain of salt, Arrieta pitching effectively is a positive sign as he came into camp recovering from knee surgery. The 32-year-old will be leaned on as the No. 2 starter in the rotation behind Aaron Nola.