Bryce Harper Celebrates New Contract With Big Weekend
Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper signed a $21.625 million contract for the 2018 season on May 13th and he translated his peace of mind that he’ll be gainfully employed next year into some big production in the Nationals’ weekend series against the Philadelphia Phillies.
On the night of the 13th, Harper hit a two out, two run game winning home run to beat the Phillies 6-4.
The Nationals and Phillies split a doubleheader on the 14th. Harper was 2 for 4 with a home run in the opener, won by the Phillies after a blown save, and 3 for 4 in the nightcap, with a pair of RBIs. At the end of the weekend, Harper was hitting .384 with 12 homers and 34 RBIs. He’s actually trailing teammate Ryan Zimmerman (.385, 13, 36) in those categories but he does lead the National League in runs scored (40), OPS (1.252) and on base percentage with an even .500.
As of the end of play on May 14th, the Nationals were 24-13 and led the second place New York Mets by 7 ½ games already. The National League East is admittedly the Nationals followed by a lot of mediocrity, but one area that Washington needs help is in the bullpen. The relief pitching has an ERA of 5.33, and the club is still trying to figure out who should be the closer. Even if the Nationals were to run away with the NL East title, a dependable bullpen is needed to go deep into the post season son look for Washington to make some deals for bullpen help as the season progresses.