The Phillies trolled Bryce Harper haters on Twitter after he won 2021 NL Outstanding Player
MLB players are the ones who decide the award’s recipients each year, so it says a lot that a combination of Harper’s teammates and opponents recognized him for the honor.
When the award was announced, the Phillies social team, as the kids say, chose violence.
The tweet blew up, and the Phillies relished in their own sass by continuing it in the replies:
They had also tweeted a normal congratulatory announcement to celebrate Harper’s win, to which his teammate Andrew McCutchen replied:
Phillies star Bryce Harper has been called overrated for years
As the Phillies’ tweet suggests, Harper has long been under a microscope in sports, and oft-maligned. The screenshot of him being voted ‘Most Overrated’ in 2019 was not the first time his peers had voted him so.
Most Overrated and most Outstanding are an interesting dichotomy, especially considering both titles were awarded to Harper by fellow MLB players. But the easiest and most obvious reason why Harper’s peers would call him “Most Overrated” is that they are jealous.
The timing checks out; in March 2019, when he was once again named ‘Most Overrated,’ Harper had just signed his $330 million deal with the Phillies, the richest in North American sports history at the time.
Harper has been famous since his teenage years, proclaimed the future of the game before he could vote in a United States election or buy lottery tickets.
When he arrived in the big leagues on April 28, 2012, he was 19 years old. He hit .270/.340/.477 with a .817 OPS, 26 doubles, nine triples, 22 home runs, and 18 stolen bases that first year, played in his first All-Star Game, and won NL Rookie of the Year.
His first Silver Slugger award and NL MVP honors came three years later, when he led MLB in on-base and slugging percentages, OPS and OPS+, and led the NL with 118 runs scored and 42 homers.
Will Bryce Harper win his second MVP award this year?
This season, Harper is once again a favorite for NL MVP honors. He was already announced as a Silver Slugger finalist earlier this week. He tied for the MLB lead with a career-high 42 doubles, and once again led the game in slugging, OPS, and OPS+. He hit over .300 for the first time since 2017 and had an OPS over 1.000 for the third time in his 10-year career.
The funny thing about Harper is that he seems to thrive on the doubt. Multiple times this season, he silenced the boos of opposing fans with a home run. If he leads the Phillies to their third championship at some point in the remaining decade-plus on his contract, the haters won’t have a leg to stand on.
One thing’s certain: after the season he just had, another ‘Most Overrated’ title won’t be among the awards he collects this year.