Whether it’s running to first, the outfield, or jumping right into the majors. Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper knows only one speed: fast. Tomorrow, the vibrant, free swinger may need to tone it down a notch in order to accomplish another feat in his short MLB career. Harper, who has missed a chunk of the season due to Knee Bursitis, was selected to participate in Major League Baseball’s Home Run Derby. Bryce will be pitched to by a familiar face; his father, Ron. Over the years, Ron has consistently thrown batting practice and his son has said he’s “excited to share that moment with him (his father)”.
The question many around baseball will be asking is if Bryce Harper has what it takes to defeat possibly the stiffest competition the derby has seen since the steroid era. Harper will face off against the hot Chris “Crush” Davis as well as former Home Run Derby champ Prince Fielder. If there’s one thing Harper has going for him it’s that he’s fresh. Harper missed a large portion of the season so far, yet has continued to put up All-Star numbers. Also, Harper may have an advantage hitting at Citi Field. Citi Field has been known to be a “hitter’s park” especially for left-handed hitters where the wall is just 335 feet. Harper must keep his speed and emotions in tack to preserve energy for the grind of a competition.
Bottom Line: All must go right for Harper to capture the title of Home Run King. It might be bit early in Harper’s career for him to be named Derby champion but if there’s one thing Bryce knows its that no rules apply to the young star.