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.”