I recently made a half-joking comment on Twitter that this blog would publish a post about 19-year-old Bryce Harper at least once a day for the rest of the season, because ever since the Washington Nationals said they were calling him up, that's what we've done. Well, if Harper keeps getting key hits and making unreal plays and playing softball with strangers in the park on days off, the joke might be on us.
On Wednesday against the Diamondbacks, Harper turned in his best game so far at the plate — 3 for 4 with two doubles, including one leading off the bottom of the ninth to set up Ian Desmond for a game-ending two-run home run.
But Harper's top moment came on Jason Kubel's fly ball to center in the sixth when Harper made a tumbling barehanded grab with just three fingers before landing in the grass. Harper seemed to misjudge the trajectory a little bit, but he was saved because — it appears — he always tries to catch fly balls using both hands. Just like you (should) tell your 8-year-old. It's one of the best examples a professional baseball player can set. Harper has shown a natural ability in making some amazing throws so far, but his barehanded catch can be attributed in part to good practice habits.
"I was wondering if anybody saw that,'' Harper said. ''It went underneath my glove, and I caught it with my bare hand on the back side of it.''
Further, enjoy the animation work of @ChadMoriyama.
And here's video of Harper's day the plate:
So ... how does Bryce League Stew sound?
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