While he might have missed out on a trip to the All-Star Game this year, it seems Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper isn’t as overrated as fans shouting it at him might believe.
According to FanGraphs’ Devan Fink, Harper’s +3.75 win probability added is the fourth-highest mark in baseball and just behind MVP candidates Christian Yelich, Cody Bellinger and Mike Trout.
It might come as a surprise to many fans given Harper entered Thursday with a .258 batting average and the third-most strikeouts (112) in the league. However, a closer look at the 26-year-old’s numbers reveals someone more deserving of the 13-year, $330 million contract he signed this offseason.
Harper ranks among the best at his position defensively this season with good health on his side. It’s been a significant boost for a team that dealt with significant defensive troubles during the 2018 season.
He also continues to produce at the plate and while his batting average might not fully capture it, Harper is amid a turnaround. He owns a .280/.417/..495 slash line in his last 115 plate appearances and carries a .966 OPS over the last 15 days.
Fans will keep chanting that he’s overrated and Harper will just keep responding with clutch hits to silence those same fans. He might not be playing at Trout or Yelich’s level, but the Phillies are more than happy with his production this year.