Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
Blog Entry

Harper would join short list of 19-year-olds

Posted on: February 3, 2012 1:58 pm
 
As CBSSports.com colleague Jon Heyman wrote, the Nationals plan to give 19-year-old Bryce Harper a real chance to make their team out of spring training.

In fact, one Nationals official told me he believes that Harper should make it, and that even though he is still learning, "he can help you win while he learns."

Besides, it's not unheard of for a 19-year-old to play in the big leagues. Mike Trout did it for 14 games with the Angels last summer. Both Uptons (B.J. and Justin) did it.

Alex Rodriguez played in the big leagues when he was still 18 years old.

But according to research through baseball-reference.com, Harper would be the first 19-year-old to break camp with a team since Felix Hernandez with the 2006 Mariners, and the first position player to do it since Andruw Jones with the 1997 Braves.

Harper will be 19 years, 172 days old when the Nationals open their season on April 5 in Chicago. King Felix (19.118 when he debuted in August 2005) was the last big leaguer that young, and Adrian Beltre (19.078 when he debuted in June 1998) was the last position player that young.

A look the 19-year-olds who have played in the big leagues since 2000:

-- Trout played 14 games with the Angels last July, hitting just .163 with a .492 OPS.

-- Justin Upton was 23 days shy of his 20th birthday when the Diamondbacks called him up in 2007.

-- Hernandez came to the big leagues to stay at age 19.

-- B.J. Upton was 18 days shy of his 20th birthday when he debuted with the Rays in August 2004.

-- Jose Reyes debuted with the Mets the day before he turned 20 in June 2003.

-- Wilson Betemit came up with the Braves as a 19-year-old in September 2001.
Comments

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: February 8, 2012 1:07 pm
 

Harper would join short list of 19-year-olds

Adrian Beltre wasn't really "19" when he debuted in 1998.  He was more likely 21 or 22.  But how cool is it to have 2 brothers make the majors BEFORE they turned 20?!?  Amazing...



Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: February 5, 2012 9:27 am
 

Harper would join short list of 19-year-olds

thickbeard the article was only mentioning 19 year olds who played since 2000. Pudge started in the 90s at 19. I'm sure there have been many players in history who debuted at age 19 or earlier. Joe Nuxhall debuted at 15 I believe.



Since: Jul 7, 2009
Posted on: February 5, 2012 3:00 am
 

Harper would join short list of 19-year-olds

how could you not mention Pudge Rodriguez?



Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: February 4, 2012 10:19 pm
 

Harper would join short list of 19-year-olds

I think this would be a mistake if he came up with the team. It won't kill him or the team if he stays in AA another year. It won't kill anyone except maybe the media who want something to write about. As if they haven't hyped this poor kid enough already.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com