Former Phillies MVPs congratulate new MVP Bryce Harper

PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 19: Ryan Howard #6 (R) and Jimmy Rollins #11 of the Philadelphia Phillies celebrate after they both scored on Howard's 2-run home run in the bottom of the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Four of the NLCS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Citizens Bank Park on October 19, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 19: Ryan Howard #6 (R) and Jimmy Rollins #11 of the Philadelphia Phillies celebrate after they both scored on Howard's 2-run home run in the bottom of the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Four of the NLCS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Citizens Bank Park on October 19, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images) /
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This isn’t Bryce Harper‘s first MVP award, but it is his first with the Philadelphia Phillies.

The Phillies were prepared to celebrate Harper’s stellar season and enlisted a trio of fellow MVPs to welcome him to the club: Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, and Mike Schmidt.

Rollins doubled down on the love with a tweet for Harper.

The Phillies also enlisted Philadelphia legends from the city’s other teams:

And Eagles QB Jalen Hurts gave a shoutout of his own:

Harper is his franchise’s first MVP in over a decade, since Howard and Rollins went back-to-back in 2006 and 2007. Before them, you’d have to go all the way back to the 80s to see a Phillie MVP; Schmidt was Most Valuable in 1980, 1981, and 1986. And before Schmidt, you’d have to go back to 1950, when Jim Konstanty had a legendary season, closing 62 games and earning 22 saves.

The Philadelphia Phillies already existed for nearly half a century when one of their players won the award; Chuck Klein was the first in 1932. Of course, the award had only existed for a year at the time. On the American League side, the then-Philadelphia Athletics dominated the first three years of the award, with Lefty Grove and Jimmie Foxx winning between 1931-1933.

Can the Phillies build a championship team around Bryce Harper?

Harper now has something elite in common with some of the best players in franchise history, but the next step is clear: Rollins, Howard, and Schmidt each have a World Series ring. If the front office does their job this offseason, maybe Harper will be able to join that exclusive club, too.

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