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Harper shows tape measure power ... in BP

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08:15 AM ET 04.08 | By at least one account, Bryce Harper's season debut -- 2 for 4 with a pair of a singles, an RBI and a strikeout -- was a ho-hum affair, but the pregame included quite a show. Home Run Hill, the grass berm beyond the right-field fence at State Mutual Stadium, served more as a flyover area than landing spot for [Harper] batting practice home runs. In Harper's fourth turn through the BP cage, the left-handed hitting Harper cleared the Hill three times. Last year's No. 1 overall pick in baseball's First-Year Player Draft is here with the Hagerstown Suns, the Washington Nationals' low-Class A affiliate, for the season opener. ... Last fall he made his professional debut in the Arizona Fall League -- he hit .343 with a 1.039 OPS in nine games -- then made his spring training debut last March.

Sporting News

Bryce Harper, Getty Images Bryce Harper, Getty Images
Comment #3 has been removed
April 8, 2011  09:06 AM ET

He does have Babe Ruth's nose.

April 8, 2011  09:07 AM ET

Give this guy a piss test and check his bat for cork. Remember Sammy Sosa and his BP bat?

April 8, 2011  10:08 AM ET

Should have seen me hit wiffle balls back in the day...now I'm unemployed

April 8, 2011  11:28 AM ET

yeah and heyward was hitting 600 foot bombs in bp, hasnt translated into league altering play at all. this kid has to much hype surrounding him right now. my only hope is that at his first big league at bat the pitcher brushes him back( about 6 inches away from his head) just to give him a heads up that he isnt bigger then they are making him out to be

April 8, 2011  01:40 PM ET
QUOTE(#4):

He does have Babe Ruth's nose.

most be the great grandson from babe ruth to have something alike!!

April 8, 2011  01:44 PM ET
QUOTE(#8):

yeah and heyward was hitting 600 foot bombs in bp, hasnt translated into league altering play at all. this kid has to much hype surrounding him right now. my only hope is that at his first big league at bat the pitcher brushes him back( about 6 inches away from his head) just to give him a heads up that he isnt bigger then they are making him out to be

heyward has lost that great motivation that brought him to the majors, wonder what really happen to that? about those braves seems as if they are not playing good baseball this days to play the lower team as it is brewers and lose all three games now that's what a call way too passive team as the braves!!!

April 8, 2011  01:46 PM ET
QUOTE(#5):

Give this guy a piss test and check his bat for cork. Remember Sammy Sosa and his BP bat?

barry bonds the cheater????

April 8, 2011  01:47 PM ET
QUOTE(#3):

Hitting bombs in batting practice is nice....do that over a career and then we can talk.

harper first has to learn the walk then the talk with his bat!!!!

April 8, 2011  02:20 PM ET

BP is meaningless... your usually hitting off guys coming off the DL or coaches... none of whom are throwing at full speed...

April 8, 2011  05:01 PM ET

LOL, do you guys have any idea how difficult it is to hit a baseball 600 feet? I don't care who is throwing it, that takes a ridiculous combination of strength and timing.

April 8, 2011  08:11 PM ET

braves will go down in this season by a record of 70 wins and 92 loses, the new managers lacks of experience and most of the times plays the game without any game plan plus the approach to the game its way too soft been to passive and without working the count it shows that it will take this manager years before he can really gain any confidence by the braves players!!!

April 9, 2011  04:06 AM ET

I am absolutely amazed by the lack of baseball knowledge from everyone (with the exception of larking) that has posted thus far. You clearly have never played baseball in your life. It's one thing to bash an 18 year old that has done nothing in his professional baseball career, but adding Heyward to the conversation is ridiculous. That kid is a beast. You're spoiled by the McGwire, Sosa, Bonds steroid tainted HR seasons. If someone doesn't hit 60+ HRs a year, they're garbage.

If you ever hit a ball 600 ft. (there aren't many that have ever lived that can make that claim) you would understand what it takes. BP pitcher or not, that is **** sick. I watched GlenAllen Hill hit a ball onto the roof of the apartments across the street from Wrigley Field in the 90s. That ball went 530 ft...

April 9, 2011  08:38 AM ET

So, he doesn't wear the eye black for BP?

April 10, 2011  06:53 AM ET
QUOTE(#10):

heyward has lost that great motivation that brought him to the majors, wonder what really happen to that? about those braves seems as if they are not playing good baseball this days to play the lower team as it is brewers and lose all three games now that's what a call way too passive team as the braves!!!

That was a four game series and the Braves won the first one

April 10, 2011  05:15 PM ET

Why So Serious? has a point. Being able to apply this power consistently and effectively is what the kid is getting paid for. I could hit 420 ft. bombs with a wooden bat consistently as a freshman in college, which meant NOTHING because I couldn't translate the skill to offspeed pitches or opposite field power. Crap, currently with my aged, out-of-shape self self I could hammer 400ft to my pull field. Let's see this kid do this against elite pitching consistently, then we can talk about how great he is. Granted, hes a stud for his age and I would bet he is free of performance enhancing elements, but the same as spring training, BP is FAR from an accurate measure of ones abilities.

 
April 10, 2011  05:15 PM ET

Why So Serious? has a point. Being able to apply this power consistently and effectively is what the kid is getting paid for. I could hit 420 ft. bombs with a wooden bat consistently as a freshman in college, which meant NOTHING because I couldn't translate the skill to offspeed pitches or opposite field power. Crap, currently with my aged, out-of-shape self self I could hammer 400ft to my pull field. Let's see this kid do this against elite pitching consistently, then we can talk about how great he is. Granted, hes a stud for his age and I would bet he is free of performance enhancing elements, but the same as spring training, BP is FAR from an accurate measure of ones abilities.

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