Bryce Harper wins third-ever Silver Slugger award after incredible 2023 campaign

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Phillies vs braves Bryce harper
Philadelphia Phillies’ Bryce Harper rounds third as he heads home to score on a hit by Nick Castellanos against the Miami Marlins during the eighth inning of Game 1 in an NL wild-card baseball playoff series Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

Major League Baseball revealed the newest winners for the 2023 Silver Sluggers, and the Philadelphia Phillies have one in their ranks as Bryce Harper earned his third Silver Slugger award.

Harper was nominated as a designated hitter while Trea Turner, Kyle Schwarber, and J.T. Realmuto were nominees at their respective positions.

He edged out Los Angeles Dodgers’ J.D. Martinez, Atlanta Braves’ Marcel Ozuna, and Miami Marlins’ Jorge Soler to take home the award. 

Phillies Bryce harper
Philadelphia Phillies designated hitter Bryce Harper (3) hits a solo homer against the Atlanta Braves during the sixth inning of Game 1 of a baseball NL Division Series, Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Bryce Harper’s incredible season recognized

The 31-year-old was a long shot even to be nominated for the award, given the qualifications. A player needs to play in 100 games to have a chance. The original timeline for Harper’s return originally was for the All-Star break but he crushed it by returning to the squad on May 2nd. He missed the chance to be nominated in 2022 by one game.

He missed the first six weeks of the season while recovering from Tommy John surgery. Upon his return, Harper finished the season with a .293/.401/.499 slash line with 21 home runs and 72 RBIs. Sixteen of his 21 home runs this season came in a 49-game span from August 5th to September 30th.

It’s the second Silver Slugger award for Harper with the Phillies, earning the first one in 2021. His first-ever Silver Slugger award came in 2015 as a member of the Washington Nationals.

Designated hitters have always been awarded in the American League while pitchers got Silver Sluggers in the NL until 2022 (excluding 2020) when it shifted to NL DHs instead of pitchers. 

Phillies vs marlins Bryce harper
Philadelphia Phillies’ Bryce Harper reacts after scoring on a triple by Nick Castellanos during the eighth inning of Game 1 in an NL wild-card baseball playoff series against the Miami Marlins, Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

AP Photo/Chris Szagola