Phillies Bryce Harper taking fellow top pick Mickey Moniak under his wing

Mickey Moniak of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Mickey Moniak of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

From one top pick to another, Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper is helping a young prospect on his quest to the big leagues

When the Phillies drafted Mickey Moniak with the number one overall pick in 2016, there was an immense amount of pressure placed on the shoulders of a kid not even out of high school.

Early in his career Moniak has crumbled under the pressure, hitting .236 for Lakewood in 2017. It wasn’t until a visit from his high school friends last year that Moniak found his bat, which was touted as very steady and consistent.

Now entering his third full season as a professional baseball player Moniak has a new voice helping lead him towards his goal of making the big leagues, Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper.

Like Moniak Harper was the number one overall pick as a teenager and had the pressure of an entire franchise thrown on his shoulders. Harper was obviously more developed than Moniak coming out of the draft, leading to his early stardom.

In an interview with Scott Palmer, Moniak talked about how Harper approached him with words of wisdom.

"It just kinda goes to show what kind of guy he is, just coming up to me, introduced himself to me, let me know that he’s here for me. Let me know if I needed anything, any advice."

Gabe Kapler added to the budding relationship between the two former top picks in his media scrum.

"The first time Bryce was in the dugout he took the time to go spend time with Mickey Moniak. I think he probably sees the situation where he can make a huge impact."

It’s not known whether the Phillies coaching staff directly asked Harper to take young players like Moniak under his wing or if Harper took it upon himself to do so. If offering to mentor Moniak was something Harper did on his own, it speaks to the kind of character fans have begun to see now that Harper is wearing red pinstripes.

Philadelphia has several first round pick outfielders, some they have signed and others they drafted on their own. Andrew McCutchen was the 11th overall pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2005, and non-roster invitee Adam Haseley was drafted by the Phillies with the eighth pick in 2017.

Even further down the Phillies depth chart is Cornelius Randolph, who the organization drafted 10th overall in 2015 yet haven’t seen much of a return on investment. Randolph was taken out of high school and hit .241 in Reading last season.

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Haseley and Moniak are still considered two of the Phillies best hitting prospects, though they might have to battle it out for a big league job with the Phillies. Harper is locked into a spot for 13 years and the club has to learn what they have in Odubel Herrera in the meantime.

Two years down the road we could see Mike Trout emerge as the Phillies next center fielder, leaving only one spot between Moniak and Haseley if one isn’t traded for a starting pitcher by then.