PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Bryce Harper hit his 300th home run, going deep against the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday to become the 158th player to reach that mark.
Harper hit the milestone homer against Matt Moore in the eighth inning Wednesday for his 15th homer this season. The two-run drive, in Harper’s 1,481st game, put Philadelphia ahead by a run, but the Phillies would cough up that lead in the ninth and lose 10-8.
He homered in three straight games for the second time this month and has 10 homers in August. Moore was the 224th pitcher he went deep against.
Harper and Moore were 1-2 among Baseball America’s top prospects in 2012.
“There are bigger numbers in my head, but 300 is pretty good,” Harper said. “I wanted to do it at home because I love being a Phillie. It’s something I’ve dreamed about. This city… I love them. I’m part of their family and they’re part of mine as well. There’s just nothing like it.”
Harper has powered the Phillies all the way to the top of the NL wild card standings, a year after he led them to the World Series. The 30-year-old Harper tied Chuck Klein on the career list with No. 300.
He hit his first career homer on May 14, 2012, with Washington. Harper hit 184 homers in seven years with the Nationals and won the 2015 NL MVP before he joined the Phillies as a free agent ahead of the 2019 season. Harper, who signed a $330 million, 13-year contract, has 116 homers with the Phillies, won his second MVP award in 2021 and was NL Championship Series MVP last season.
“There’ve been a lot of great people who have come in and out of this clubhouse who have helped me in my career,” Harper said. “I value playing every day. I value going out there and working and grinding each day. I love this game. I love playing with ‘Phillies’ across my chest and I love playing this game every day. It’s all I want to do..”
Harper is the 12th active player to reach 300. Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera tops the list at 510.
Harper led the NL with 42 homers for Washington in 2015 and hit at least 30 three other times. Harper’s two-run drive in the eighth inning of a Game 5 win against San Diego in last season’s NLCS that sent the Phillies into the World Series is on the short list of great moments in Philly sports history.
He returned to the lineup this season in May, just 160 days after surgery on his right elbow. The recovery from the injury forced him this season to move from right field to designated hitter and first base and cost him his power early.
Harper has never hit less than 13 homers in a season, and one of those years was in the COVID-19-shortened 2020 year.
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