Washington Nationals: 5 To Watch In Philly

Mandatory Credit: Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports /
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Although you can say Bryce Harper is always a player to watch, the slugger left Thursday’s win over Arizona in the sixth inning. Complaining of groin tightness following a diving catch and a hard swinging strike out, the 2015 NL MVP is day-to-day this weekend.

The last two weeks have seen Harper shred pitching. When he makes contact, his BAbip is .448. His batting eye is incredible, drawing 12 walks over the last 12 games. With an on-base percentage of .509, he is in contention for a second Most Valuable Player award.

Groin injuries are painful. If this was not a divisional series, you would expect him to rest at least one game if not two. Harper, however, loves facing the Phillies. Unless he is in true pain or risks further injury, he is playing.

Yet, as he nurses the injury, he will not be at full strength. Watch for how comfortable he is at the plate and what Harper swings at. Chris Heisey filled in Thursday. Expect more of the same over the weekend depending on stiffness.

Against the Phillies this year in six games, Harper has a slash line of .280/.333/.640. Philly pitchers fanned him six times with two walks. He has slammed three homers driving in seven. Something has to give.