0 for 4 with 2 K's on Wednesday, Bryce Harper didn't get the chance most major leaguers, or any of the other prospects on the Scottsdale Scorpions' roster would, to get right back out on the field in the next game to erase the memory of a bad day at the plate. The Washington Nationals' no.1 overall pick in last June's Draft, and the second-youngest player to ever participate in the Arizona Fall League, Harper was added to the Scorpions' roster, along with the other Nats' prospects playing in the AFL, as part of the "taxi squad" which means that unlike his fellow future Nationals, he only plays on Wednesdays and Saturdays. So the 6'3'', 225lb catcher-turned-outfielder had to sit and watch two games before he got a chance to step back in the batter's box yesterday in the top of the second inning of a 2-1 game in which his team held an early lead...Peoria Saguaros' right-hander Erik Davis, a 6'4'', 24-year-old '08 13th Round pick from the Padres' organization was on the hill, having already surrendered two runs in the Scorpions' first...
"BANG!! Bryce Harper hits his first AFL HR!!!" - Federal Baseball.
"First pitch HR for Bryce Harper - no doubt line drive way out to right field." - ESPN.com's Keith Law on Twitter (@keithlaw).
"Bryce Harper just bounced his first pro home run off the party deck above the right-field bullpen at Scottsdale (Stadium)." - @NatsTownNews
(ed. note - "If you followed (@federalbaseball.com) on Twitter you could have seen THIS twelve hours ago.")
There was no doubt about Bryce Harper's first professional HR. It seemed to hang up there a little longer than most. Saguaros' right fielder Leslie Anderson just watched it soar out. Harper ended the day 3 for 5 with a HR, double, single, 2 RBI's and 2 swinging K's. The fastest bat in Arizona singled in his second trip to the plate, but got doubled off first on a line drive in the at bat that followed. Harper K'd swinging at three pitches in his third AB, on four pitches in his fourth, and ended the day by drillling an RBI double to right in the bottom of the ninth to drive in the Scorpions' 13th run in what ends up a 13-9 win when Harper's fellow Nats' prospect Cole Kimball takes the mound, struggles but successfully holds on for the win. '08 19th Round pick, infielder Stephen Lombardozzi was the only other Nats' prospect in action on Saturday. The 22-year-old Fulton, Maryland native went 2 for 5 in the Scottsdale win, doubling in the tying run in the bottom of the eighth in his final AB and scoring the winning run in the next at bat when Giants' infield prospect Charlie Culberson doubled in the eventual winning run.
• AFL Stats:
Bryce Harper - 6 for 17, .353 AVG, .353 OBP, .647 SLG, 2 2B, 1 HR, 4 RBI's, 5 K's.
Derek Norris - 8 for 26, .308 AVG, .486 OBP, .808 SLG, 2 2B, 1 3B, 3 HR's, 12 RBI's. 9 BB, 7 K's, 2 SB.
Michael Burgess - 10 for 37, .270 AVG, 317 OBP, .378 SLG, 2 2B, 1 3B, 7 RBI's, 3 BB, 13 K's, 1 SB.
Stephen Lombardozzi - 10 for 44, .227 AVG, .364 OBP, .364 SLG, 6 2B, 3 RBI's, 8 BB, 3 K's, 1 SB, 1 CS.
Sammy Solis - (0-0), 5.40 ERA, 3 GS, 11.2 IP, 14 H, 10 R, 7 ER, 1 HR, 5 BB, 7 K's.
Brad Peacock - (0-0), 2.00 ERA, 6 G, 9.0 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 13 K's.
Adam Carr - (1-0), 3.86 ERA, 5 G, 7.0 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 4 K's.
Cole Kimball - (0-0), 1.29 ERA, 6 G, 7.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K's.