Updated: Nov 22, 2021
Coming into to the 2021 MLB season, you'd be hard-pressed to believe Bryce Harper would end up having one of the best seasons Phillies fans have seen in a long time. Yet, that's exactly what he did. There is simply not enough words to express how amazing Bryce was for the Philadelphia Phillies this past season, and there shouldn't be a debate to his case for MVP any longer.
In 2021, Bryce Harper had easily one of the best seasons of his career. He's slashed .309/.429/.615 with a league-best 1.044 OPS, with his .615 slugging percentage leading all of baseball as well. Along with this, he had 35 home runs, 42 doubles, 84 RBI's and 13 stolen bases. The only other player in Major League Baseball with a .300/.400/.600 line was Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Harper also became just the fourth outfielder in baseball history with 100 runs, 100 walks, 40 doubles and 35 home runs in a season. The other 3? Barry Bonds, Babe Ruth, and Stan Musial. Elite company.
One of the arguments people try and utilize the most against Bryce's MVP case this season is the fact that he only had 84 RBI's. However, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to dig a little deeper and find why he only had 84. For instance, over the course of his 488 AB this season, only 88 of them have come up with runners in scoring position, and only 183 of them have had runners on, period. With RISP, Bryce bat .330/.488/.545 with 43 RBI's. 27(!) of his home runs have been with the bases empty. If you're still using this against him and claiming he isn't clutch, do the world a favor and stop watching baseball.
Having already received the Silver Slugger and Hank Aaron award, Harper has just one more piece of hardware to add this season. Along with Phillies and baseball legend Mike Schmidt announcing the recipient of the National League MVP award, it seems like our guy has it locked in.
There simply was not a single player in the National League during the 2021 season, where he wasn't even an All Star, that has been better than Bryce Harper. He lead in every stat that matters most and this Phillies team is easily losing well over 100 games if he's not playing right field every single day. You want to talk about being the Most VALUABLE player? Then you're talking about MV3.