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Bryce Harper claimed his second Most Valuable Player Award on Thursday night, edging out Juan Soto, Fernando Tatis Jr. and several others in what seemingly became a wide-open race in the NL.
Harper captured 17 of the 30 first-place votes from the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Soto (six first-place votes) and Tatis (two) finished second and third, respectively, in the vote tally, which also adds points for second- and third-place finishes. San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford received four first-place votes and Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Trea Turner got one(which in my opinion is a travesty).
“It’s a blast going to play baseball every single day in this great city,” Harper said on Thursday night, adding later, “Being around the fans that we have, all they want you to do is work hard and try to win and try to be a great player each and every night.”
Indeed, the easiest way to the heart of any fan base is to be the best player in the league. The baseball writers certified it for Harper on Thursday, voting him the winner of the National League’s Most Valuable Player Award for the second time of his career, and his first as a Phillie. As well as Bryce played in 2021, the Phillies finished 82-80 and missed the playoffs to extend their drought to 10 seasons.
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He played every game in the second half, coming back from a injury he sustained by the Cardinals’ Genesis Cabrera in St. Louis on April 28. Harper missed seven of the Phillies’ next eight games and struggled at times to regain his form and then the 2nd half begun and went on a tear with a 1.188 O.P.S. — compared to .684 for all of the other Phillies. Overall, Harper led the majors in OPS (1.044) and doubles (42) while batting .309 with 35 homers and 13 stolen bases.
It is Harper’s second NL MVP Award. He previously won in 2015 with the Nationals, which makes him the fifth player in baseball history to win MVPs with two franchises, joining Frank Robinson (Reds, Orioles), Barry Bonds (Pirates, Giants), Alex Rodriguez (Rangers, Yankees) and Jimmie Foxx (A’s, Red Sox).
Harper is the fourth outfielder in baseball history to have at least 100 runs, 100 walks, 40 doubles and 35 home runs in a season. Babe Ruth, Stan Musial and Bonds are the others. Bryce Harper is just the 15th player to win multiple MVPs before turning 29 joining Ernie Banks, Johnny Bench, Barry Bonds, Joe DiMaggio, Jimmie Foxx, Juan Gonzalez, Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Dale Murphy, Stan Musial, Hal Newhouser, Albert Pujols, Frank Thomas& Mike Trout.
2022 MLB Season should be interesting. "Overrated" is a word that's often been attached to Bryce Harper throughout his career and something you will hear non-stop by some fanbases or most of them.
Bring on Spring Training!!
Written By: Chris Lahiff
Courtesy of: CEVsports.com
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