The Washington Nationals need Bryce Harper.
If they are ever going to make the kind of noise they intend to in the playoffs and possibly the World Series, the Nationals need their young star to get his swing on track and start raking over these last couple months.
That made for an odd story, then, when there were rumblings about Harper being sent down to the minor leagues by manager Matt Williams. Harper was in a bit of a slump upon returning from a thumb injury, but the guy is still just 21 years old and his .253/.336/.374 slash line isn’t the kind of disastrous that usually earns a demotion.
On Thursday afternoon, Harper responded to the current pressure on him to get things turned around, and he did so with authority.
What the Nationals would really like to see, after all, is a return of Harper’s power. They would like to see him blitzing the gaps with extra base hits and showing the pop to all fields that has made him a phenom in the first place. He showed just that with an opposite field walk-off home run to seal the team’s 5-3 victory over the New York Mets.
Check out video of Harper’s walk-off shot below.