Due to the blessing of resources from the new stadium, the Atlanta Braves could possibly be a player for the big-money free agents. Could they sign a former rival to a big deal?
The Atlanta Braves have an opening in the outfield currently, and they have additional resources that have been generated due to The Battery and additional ticket revenue from the new stadium, allowing the team to compete for the biggest free agents. Could that allow the Braves to make a serious bid for Bryce Harper?
Bryce Harper player profile
Perhaps the most highly-publicized high school player in the history of the game, Harper was on the cover of Sports Illustrated before he was old enough to drive a car. Harper orchestrated his ability to hit free agency at a young age by graduating high school early and enrolling in a wood bat junior college in what would be his junior year of high school, allowing him to go #1 overall to the Washington Nationals.
Harper made his professional debut in the Arizona Fall League as a 17-year0old, which was incredible, yet he handled himself well in 9 games, hitting .343/.410/.629. By the end of his first minor league season, at just 18, he had reached AA and combined to hit .297/.392/.501 with 17 home runs and 26 stolen bases over 109 games. He then got a second dose of the AFL, heading there at 17 and 18, and combining to hit .336/.403/.633 over 34 games and 144 plate appearances, with 9 doubles, 3 triples, 7 home runs, and 5 stolen bases.
After just 21 games in AAA, Harper was brought up to the major leagues in 2012. At 19, he won the Rookie of the Year award and was an All-Star as he hit .270/.340/.477 with 22 home runs and 18 stolen bases.
Harper has missed one All-Star game in his career, 2014 when he was hurt, and he was not voted a starter, so he was not selected as a reserve. The 2014 season is the only season of his career that Harper has not hit 20 home runs and 20 doubles as well.
Let’s take a quick look at where Harper sits at this point in history…