The Washington Times - May 14, 2012, 08:29PM

The wait is over.

Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper hit his first major league home run Monday night, connecting with a 2-1 pitch from San Diego’s Tim Stauffer and sending it to the grass batter’s eye at Nationals Park.

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It took Harper 62 major league plate appearances before he got ahold of his first home run but when he did, there was no doubt. Harper hit Stauffer’s 87-mph slider to dead center field. A solo shot, it put the Nationals up 4-1 at the time.

The fans at Nationals Park, a small gathering on a rainy night in Washington, went wild as Harper’s ball left the park and the 19-year-old phenom sprinted around the bases in 18 seconds.

They didn’t stop as Harper scurried into the dugout, greeted by his teammates, and they persisted until Harper came out for a curtain call. 

Harper, ultimately, obliged, standing on the top step of the dugout and pointing once to his right and once to his left acknowledge the fans. 

According to ESPN Stats and Information, Harper is the youngest player to homer in the major leagues since 1998 when Adrian Beltre hit seven home runs before turning 19 1/2.