The 6-foot-3, 230 pound Harper batted .274 with 20 homers and 58 RBI over 118 games in 2013.
However, Harper was plagued by lingering shoulder and knee ailments after violently colliding with the outfield wall at Chavez Ravine on May 13.
Hence, it’s virtually impossible to fairly judge or analyze the 2012 NL Rookie of the Year’s sophomore campaign.
Prior to the fiasco in Tinseltown, Harper had a legitimate opportunity to overtake flamethrower Vida Blue as the youngest MVP in MLB history.
Blue’s record was secured largely thanks to the indecision and procrastination of general manager Mike Rizzo.
After weeks of consideration, Rizzo finally decided to place Harper on the 15-day disabled list and the “Sin City” native ultimately missed more than a month on the diamond.
“It’s just coming in here every single day and having expectations that you need to do well,” said Harper, 20, who signed a 5-year deal worth $9.9 million with Washington after being selected first overall in 2010. “I love pressure. I really do. But of course, it’s going to take a toll on you all year long.”
A five-tool player, Harper and agent Scott Boras will reportedly seek a 12-year contract extension following the conclusion of the 2015 season.
Although an enlarged version of Harper will inevitably spur nasty rumors, the two-time All-Star is wise to further strengthen and shield his body.
Already abstaining from drugs, alcohol and groupie beaver, Harper is clearly ready to face “expectations.”
Provided the youngster doesn’t enter spring training resembling Lou Ferrigno, an even fitter Bryce Harper will dominate “all year long” and own “the District” in 2014.by