Phillies: Best Individual Seasons By Uniform Number (0 – 10)
The next two great Phillies seasons include a newcomer and an unconventional guy
2 – Rico Brogna (1999)
Brogna had his first taste of Major League play with the Tigers in 1992, hitting .192 with a home run in 29 at-bats. After spending the 1993 season in Triple-A, hitting .273 with 11 home runs and 59 RBI in 129 games, Brogna was traded to the Mets in exchange for Alan Zinter. After being called up after 67 minor league games in 1994, Brogna hit .351 with seven home runs.
During his first full season at the Major League level, Brogna hit .289 with 22 home runs and 76 RBI. Brogna dazzled in the field, committing only three errors for a .998 fielding percentage. A form of spinal arthritis limited Brogna to a .255 average with seven home runs in 55 games in 1996.
After being traded to the Phillies after the 1996 season for Toby Borland and Ricky Jordan, Brogna went on to have the best seasons in his career. Continuously showing great glovework, Brogna became remarkably consistent at the plate, belting 20 plus home runs in each of the next three seasons. His 1999 campaign was the best of them all, collecting 172 hits, 24 home runs, 102 RBI, and 90 runs, which were all career-highs.
Just 38 games with the Phillies in 2000, the Phillies waived Brogna, who was claimed off waivers by the Boston Red Sox. He struggled in Boston, hitting under .200 in 43 games. After just three home runs with the Braves in 2001, Brogna retired at the age of 31 with 795 hits and 106 home runs.
3 – Bryce Harper (2019)
When the Phillies signed Bryce Harper for 13-year, $330 million last February, they brought in a six-time All-Star, Rookie of the Year and NL MVP. With much pressure on Harper to live up to the contract, he got off to a hot start, batting .500 with three home runs in the first week.
Over the next 38 games, Harper hit only four home runs and saw his batting average plummet to .222 with 60 strikeouts. Home runs on consecutive days against the Rockies in mid-May, including a monster shot over the brick wall behind centerfield at Citizen’s Bank Park gave Phillies fans a sign of what was to come later in the summer.
An average month of June which totaled a .250 average with 5 home runs and 18 RBI put Harper on pace for 29 home runs, still under his 162-game season total and less than the Phillies and their fans had hoped for.
Although Harper went deep only three times in July, he came up with a clutch, game-winning double against the Dodgers during a five-RBI game on July 16. When the dog days of summer came in August, Haper got hot, smashing 11 home runs in 26 games. The biggest blow was the “oh my God” walk-off grand slam against the Cubs on August 15. Harper would complete a three-game stretch in which he went deep four times with 10 RBI.
A six home run, 17 RBI month in September raised Harper’s totals for the season to .260 batting average, 35 home runs, 114 RBI, 98 runs scored and 99 walks. Although 2019 was a year that everyone seemed to be going deep, Harper’s home run total was second-highest of his career, and the 114 smashed his previous high of 100 in 2018.