SportsPulse: Opening week is upon us and hope springs eternal. For The Win’s Ted Berg provides his biggest and boldest predictions for the 2019 MLB season.
For a second consecutive year, The Athletic surveyed players across Major League Baseball on a variety of subjects, from their favorite managers to potential rule changes.
And for the second consecutive year, Bryce Harper was voted the “most overrated” player in the league by the surveyed players.
“I don’t really know what to say,” the Philadelphia Phillies outfielder told USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday. “I mean, I have no answer. I have no idea.
“I knew ESPN did (a similar poll) a couple years back, and I won MVP the next year. So I don’t know. Maybe we’ll do that again this year. We’ll see.”
Harper spoke to USA TODAY Sports as part of an endorsement deal with ACUVUE OASYS with Transitions, new transition contacts lenses that he is wearing this season. The lenses have technology that is designed to adapt to changing light.
The scrutiny is nothing new for Harper, who was billed as “baseball’s chosen one” on the cover of Sports Illustrated when he was just 16 years old and drafted No. 1 overall in 2010. He was voted “most overrated” in a poll of anonymous players conducted by ESPN in both 2014 and 2015, when he won the National League MVP award.
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Now 26, Harper has been voted to six All-Star Games in his seven big-league seasons, averaging 32 homers and 91 RBI per year. He signed a 13-year, $330-million deal with the Phillies last month after starting his career with the Washington Nationals.
Contact Tom Schad at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.