When hearing the news some might say, “Really? He’s not won it yet?” He seems to have been in the Majors for quite some time already due to the fact that he actually has. He made his debut in April of 2012, just six months after his 19th birthday. But regardless of age and to those believers and disbelievers alike, Bryce Harper is your 2015 National League Most Valuable Player.
Harper, 23 years, 34 days old, is the third-youngest player to win the National League MVP award, behind Hall of Famers Johnny Bench (22 years, 298 days for the Cincinnati Reds in 1970) and Stan Musial (22 years, 316 days for the 1943 St. Louis Cardinals). The all-time youngest MVP is Oakland Athletics pitcher Vida Blue in 1971. Blue struck out 301 batters that season in 39 starts. He ended the ’71 campaign with a diminutive 1.82 ERA. Blue was 22 years, 64 days old when he received the American League MVP award.
As far as Harper is concerned, though, in only in his fourth season and battling a few injuries here or there, he still managed to play 153 games this season. During these contests he slashed a gaudy .330/.460/.649 to accompany his 42 home runs, 99 RBIs, 118 runs and 172 hits. Not to mention, he was an All-Star and won a Silver Slugger Award.
Although he walked away with all 30 first-place votes in this season’s race, other players did make the list. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks, first baseman Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds, first baseman Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs, and outfielder Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates were all in contention. But in the end, it was all Harper.
He also has plenty of career bests in 2015 such as games played (153), plate appearances (654), hits (172), doubles (38), homers (42), RBIs (99), walks (124), strike outs (131), and an astoundingly impressive WAR (9.9).