Photo: Wikimedia Commons and Getty Images/Otto Greule Jr
Whether it’s on the base paths or at the plate, Bryce Harper continues to amaze Washington Nationals fans with his immense skill level and production.Harper’s former minor league teammate and fellow rookie phenom with the Los Angeles Angels, Mike Trout, is also off to an impressive season.
One of the most astounding parts about each of their rookie campaigns has been how great they’ve played for being so young.
Trout is 20 years old. Harper won’t turn 20 until October.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports recently wrote a piece on Harper, and by default Trout, revealing how insanely talented these two players are.
This is the list of 19 or 20-year-old major leaguers who have finished a season with an OPS (on-base plus slugging) of .900 or better with a minimum of 400 plate appearances (via Rosenthal):
Mel Ott, 1929, 1.084.
Ted Williams, 1939, 1.045.
Alex Rodriguez, 1996, 1.045.
Al Kaline, 1955, .967.
Jimmie Foxx, 1928, .964.
Frank Robinson, 1956, .937.
Mickey Mantle, 1952, .924.
Trout’s OPS is currently at .924, while Harper’s OPS has hovered around .900 most of the season and sits around .880 going into play June 7, 2012.
Note: Only 22 players who qualify for the batting title (minimum 3.1 at bats per team game) have an OPS of .900 or better in all of MLB as of this writing.
As Rosenthal points out, that impressive list features six Hall of Fame players and one current player (A-Rod) who was considered to be among the all-time greats until he revealed he took steroids.
It’s not to say Trout and Harper will automatically reach those levels once their careers are done, but it proves why baseball fans in D.C. and southern California are so ecstatic over their teams’ futures.
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