"Baseball scouts can have the bowed perspective of an Escher print, but most insist they have seen no player this good this soon. As far as they are concerned, Harper is a tape-measure-testing, laser-throwing, eyeblack-oozing baseball cyborg." - New York Times - "At 17, Baseball’s Next Sure Thing: Bryce Harper" - By ALAN SCHWARZ
At just past 7:00 pm EST tonight, the Washington Nationals are expected to make 17-year-old College of Southern Nevada catcher/outfielder Bryce Harper the no.1 pick in the 2010 MLB First-Year Player Draft. After a full year at the top of the prospect class, Harper's played in front of just about every scout and baseball writer in the country, and he hasn't cracked, (unless you count getting tossed out an NJCAA tournament game last week, or taunting fans who were antagonizing him, or "throwing" his bat at an ump). A year after the Washington Nationals signed Stephen Strasburg to the biggest contract ever given to a pitching prospect, the Nats are most likely going to have to give Bryce Harper the largest contract ever given to a position player.
The myth of Harper is well-established, the 502ft HR, the SI.com article by Tom Verducci which labeled him as the "LeBron of Baseball" (LeBryce?), leaving high school two years early and earning his GED to make himself eligible for the Draft, and hitting for a ridiculous .442/.524/.986 slash line in his freshman year in a wood bat league (no PING!) at the College of Southern Nevada, with 22 two-baggers, 4 triples, 29 dingers and 89 runs batted in 62 games and 215 at bats. What more is there to say other than his name. Mr. Selig, I still don't forgive you for the treatment the Expos got. But I look forward to hearing you announce the name of the Nats' second-straight no.1 overall pick...just under two hours to go.
• Post Draft Coverage To Follow Later Tonight, here and at SB Nation DC, and I'll be in the comments posting updates from the mobile all night, or you can follow at @federalbaseball on the Twitter.