Bryce Harper wins NL Rookie of the Year

  • Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) hits a solo home run in the bottom of the third inning to put the Washington Nationals up 4-0  over the St. Louis Cardinals in game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park, Washington, D.C., Friday, October 12, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) hits a solo home run in the bottom of the third inning to put the Washington Nationals up 4-0 over the St. Louis Cardinals in game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park, Washington, D.C., Friday, October 12, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) signs autographs for fans before the Washington Nationals play the Houston Astros during spring training at the Osceola County Stadium, Kissimmee, Fla., Saturday, March 3, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) signs autographs for fans before the Washington Nationals play the Houston Astros during spring training at the Osceola County Stadium, Kissimmee, Fla., Saturday, March 3, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) poses for a portrait during photo day at spring training, Viera, Fla., Tuesday, February 28, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) poses for a portrait during photo day at spring training, Viera, Fla., Tuesday, February 28, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) shares a laugh with a teammate as the Washington Nationals plays the Georgetown Hoyas during spring training exhibition game at Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla., Friday, March 2, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) shares a laugh with a teammate as the Washington Nationals plays the Georgetown Hoyas during spring training exhibition game at Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla., Friday, March 2, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) runs sprints in the outfield following a game between the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros during spring training at Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla., Sunday, March 4, 2012. The Nationals lost to the Asros 10-2. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) runs sprints in the outfield following a game between the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros during spring training at Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla., Sunday, March 4, 2012. The Nationals lost to the Asros 10-2. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Bryce Harper signs autographs before the Washington Nationals take on the Arizona Diamondbacks in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Bryce Harper signs autographs before the Washington Nationals take on the Arizona Diamondbacks in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Bryce Harper takes the field as the Washington Nationals take on the Arizona Diamondbacks in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Bryce Harper takes the field as the Washington Nationals take on the Arizona Diamondbacks in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) catches a fly ball in left field as the Washington Nationals lose to the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-1 in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) catches a fly ball in left field as the Washington Nationals lose to the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-1 in Major League Baseball at Nations Ballpark, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, May 1, 2012. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)
  • Bryce Harper splashes water on his face in between innings during the Nationals game against the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park, Washington D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012.  Game time temperature at the park was 95 degrees Fahrenheit.  (Ryan M.L. Young/The Washington Times)Bryce Harper splashes water on his face in between innings during the Nationals game against the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park, Washington D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012. Game time temperature at the park was 95 degrees Fahrenheit. (Ryan M.L. Young/The Washington Times)
  • Nationals General Manager Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo gives a hug to Bryce Harper (34) prior to the game as the Washington Nationals host the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)Nationals General Manager Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo gives a hug to Bryce Harper (34) prior to the game as the Washington Nationals host the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)
  • Bryce Harper slides in to third base in the bottom of the tenth inning during the Washington Nationals game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park, Washington D.C.,Tuesday, July 17, 2012.   Harper's triple allowed Jhonatan Solano to score tying  the game at 4-4.  (Ryan M.L. Young/The Washington Times)Bryce Harper slides in to third base in the bottom of the tenth inning during the Washington Nationals game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park, Washington D.C.,Tuesday, July 17, 2012. Harper's triple allowed Jhonatan Solano to score tying the game at 4-4. (Ryan M.L. Young/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals Bryce Harper makes his way around third base after his solo home run in the bottom of the fifth inning as the Washington Nationals host the New York Mets at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, August 19, 2012. The Nationals defeated the Mets 5-2. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)Washington Nationals Bryce Harper makes his way around third base after his solo home run in the bottom of the fifth inning as the Washington Nationals host the New York Mets at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, August 19, 2012. The Nationals defeated the Mets 5-2. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrates after beating the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first game of a doubleheader at National Park,Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, in Washington, DC. Washington Nationals won 3-1 (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)

Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrates after beating the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first game of a doubleheader at National Park,Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, in Washington, DC. Washington Nationals won 3-1 (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrates after scoring the tying run in the eight inning, Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, in Washington, DC. Washington Nationals lose to the Los Angeles Dodgers 6 to 7 in the second game of the doubleheader at National Park (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrates after scoring the tying run in the eight inning, Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, in Washington, DC. Washington Nationals lose to the Los Angeles Dodgers 6 to 7 in the second game of the doubleheader at National Park (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)
  • Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) rounds second before safely siding into third in the first inning in Game 5 of the National League Division Series between the Washington Nationals and the St. Louis Cardinals at Nationals Park, Thursday, October 11, 2012. (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) rounds second before safely siding into third in the first inning in Game 5 of the National League Division Series between the Washington Nationals and the St. Louis Cardinals at Nationals Park, Thursday, October 11, 2012. (Craig Bisacre/The Washington Times)
  • Nationals Bryce Harper flies out in the bottom of the fifth inning as the Washington Nationals host the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)Nationals Bryce Harper flies out in the bottom of the fifth inning as the Washington Nationals host the Colorado Rockies at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Sunday, July 8, 2012. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Harper hit just .233 in July and August, but in the season’s final 44 games, he hit .327 with 12 home runs and 26 extra-base hits. He turned 20 on Oct. 16, four days after the Nationals were eliminated from the National League Division Series. Harper was just 3-for-23 in the playoffs, but he tripled and homered in their Game 5 loss.

“This year was a lot of fun,” Harper said. “I had a great group of guys around me. They made it the way I wanted it. To be able to go in there and try to be a game changer for them … really get the fans of D.C. excited, that was my main goal. To try to win a World Series. That didn’t happen this year, but hopefully next year.”

Said veteran Mark DeRosa in the moments after the Nationals’ season ended: “What Bryce did was amazing. For a 19-year-old to do what he did was absolutely amazing.”

© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Get Adobe Flash player