PHILADELPHIA -- If it seems like Bryce Harper is accomplishing something every couple of days few, if any, teenagers have ever accomplished ... well, it's true.
Just about every positive thing Harper has done on the field in the last couple of weeks has carried the 19-year-old over a new threshold, further cemented his status as one of the best players in his age group ever to perform in the major leagues.
And Harper was up to his old tricks again last night during the Nationals' 8-4 win over the Phillies. Let's recap...
With his first-inning blast into the stands in deep left-center, Harper recorded his 20th home run. The only teenager ever to hit more, of course, was Tony Conigliaro for the 1964 Red Sox.
Asked about getting No. 20, Harper responded: "I like those 93 runs a lot better."
Ah, yes. By crossing the plate on his home run trot, Harper recorded his 93rd run of the season. The only teenager ever to score more runs: Buddy Lewis of the 1936 Senators, who finished with 100.
So, would reaching the century mark in runs scored mean something for Harper?
"Absolutely," he said. "Being on base for all the guys to drive me in, just being key in that respect and getting the momentum going early, doing things on the basepaths, I think that's huge."
Harper obviously takes a lot of pride in his baserunning, so surely he was fired up to notch his 17th stolen base last night. That makes him the first teenager ever in the 17-17 Club (17 homers, 17 steals). Three more stolen bases over the season's final seven games, and Harper obviously would become the first-ever teenager in the 20-20 club.
Pretty amazing stuff, right?
"No, nothing really amazes me with him," teammate Ian Desmond said. "Regardless of all the home runs, the great throws, things like that, he impacts the baseball game every single day, whether it's on the basepaths, everything. Nothing surprises me with him. I think he's got the brightest future, and he's a good kid. That makes it so much better."