Phillies OF Bryce Harper heating up at the right time

Bryce Harper #3 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images)
Bryce Harper #3 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /

Bryce Harper is back to hitting home runs with nine games left on the season

Although Jay Bruce has made his return to the lineup, the Philadelphia Phillies are still notably without catcher J.T. Realmuto, first baseman Rhys Hoskins and shortstop Jean Segura.

Yet, amid a seemingly revolving door of players being added to the injured list, Phillies star outfielder Bryce Harper appears to be heating up at just the right time.

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So far this season in 161 at-bats, Harper has 11 home runs and 26 RBI, while slashing .267/.417/.540

It may seem unfair to compare Harper’s first season in red pinstripes with this year’s stats — due to the still-unfinished 60-game slate — but the six-time All-Star’s recent stats as of late sure seem more “Bryce-like.” In 2019, Harper had 35 home runs, 114 RBI, and a .260/.372/.510 slash line.

Harper has slugged four home runs dating back to September 12 opposite the Miami Marlins. Five days later, Harper slugged two opposite in the same game against the Phillies’ fellow division rival New York Mets — one in the first inning and another in the second.

And, during Game 1 of Friday’s twin bill doubleheader against the Toronto Blue Jays, the slugging outfielder went yard again, a fifth-inning blast in the eventual 7-0 victory. In Game 2, Harper produced a clutch, game-tying two-run double in the team’s eventual 8-7 win — their first doubleheader sweep since 2012.

Also in Game 2, rookie Rafael Marchan picked up his first professional home run, Mickey Moniak his first MLB hit, and Connor Brogdon his first MLB win.

So far on the season, the Phillies are 26-25, all the while dealing with multiple injuries and a historically bad bullpen — despite the pre-deadline trades with the New York Yankees for David Hale, with the Boston Red Sox for Brandon Workman and Heath Hembree and with the Milwaukee Brewers for David Phelps.

The Phillies have just nine games left, including yet another doubleheader, to secure one of eight postseasons spots in the National League. It can be done, but the team needs to step up and make it happen.

light. Related Story. Phillies: Rafael Marchan slugs 1st professional home run