IS BRYCE HARPER A REAL LIABILITY IN THE PHILLIES OUTFIELD?

By Sam Bush

As great a hitter as new Philly Bryce Harper may be, there are serious questions about his fielding.

Here are players who had a decline of at least 15 defensive runs* relative to average in a season since 2002, were younger than 27 and played in the same position for the same team:

FIELDING RUNS VS. AVG
HISTORICAL PLAYERS YEARS AGES POS YEAR 1 YEAR 2 YEAR 3
Matt Kemp 2009-11 24-26 CF 0 -31 -6
Jeff Francoeur 2007-09 23-25 RF +20 -3 +4
Nick Markakis 2008-10 24-26 RF +17 -5 -8
Mike Trout 2012-14 20-22 CF +15 -5 -9
Jay Bruce 2010-12 23-25 RF +18 0 -3
Luis Matos 2003-05 24-26 CF +9 -8 -2
Andre Ethier 2007-09 25-27 RF +4 -11 -11
FIELDING RUNS VS. AVG
CURRENT PLAYERS YEARS AGES POS YEAR 1 YEAR 2 YEAR 3
Bryce Harper 2017-19 24-26 RF +3 -20 ?
Odubel Herrera 2017-19 25-27 CF +6 -11 ?

* According to an average of the defensive metrics found at Baseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs.

Minimum 700 innings in all years. Ages are as of June 30 of the season in question.

SOURCES: BASEBALL-REFERENCE.COM, FANGRAPH

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