Bryce Harper voted NL Outstanding Player in MLB Players Choice Awards

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Harper voted National League Player of the Year by his peers originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Bryce Harper has claimed one of baseball's prestigious individual awards.

The Phillies slugger on Thursday night won a Players Choice Award when he was named the National League's Outstanding Player in a vote by his peers.

Harper, along with Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. of the Toronto Blue Jays, was also a finalist for MLB Player of the Year. Ohtani was voted the winner of that award. The pitcher/slugging designated hitter was named the American League's Outstanding Player, as well.

Phillies pitcher Zack Wheeler was a finalist for NL Pitcher of the Year along with Max Scherzer of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Corbin Burnes of the Milwaukee Brewers. The award went to Scherzer.

The Players Choice Awards were founded by the MLB Players Association in 1992 and voting is conducted by the players.

This is the second time that Harper has won a Players Choice Award. He was voted the NL's Outstanding Player in 2015, the year he won NL MVP Award with the Washington Nationals. Harper is considered a top candidate for NL MVP again this season. That award, voted on by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America, will be announced on November 18.

Harper had a brilliant season in 2021, his third with the Phillies. He hit .309 with a .429 on-base percentage and a .615 slugging percentage. He and Guerrero were the only two players in the majors to reach .300/.400/.600 in all three of those categories. Harper led the majors with a 1.044 OPS. He led the NL with 78 extra-base hits and hit 35 home runs with 84 RBIs. 

In addition, Harper became just the fourth player in history to reach at least 100 runs, 100 walks, 40 doubles and 35 homers in a single season, joining all-time greats Babe Ruth, Stan Musial and Barry Bonds.

"Bryce's 2021 season was one of the greatest in our franchise's history," Phillies managing partner John Middleton said in a statement. "He put up incredible offensive numbers especially down the stretch, when he started each of the team's final 72 games. To be selected by his peers and awarded with the 2021 MLBPA NL Outstanding Player Award is one of baseball's highest honors and only further validates his accomplishments this season. In addition to his on-field success, highlighted by his selection as a Silver Slugger finalist, Bryce is a special person off the field, which is why he is also being honored with this year's Stan Musial Award. 

"When we first signed Bryce, we knew we were getting one of the best in the game. We couldn't be happier to have him in Phillies pinstripes as he continues to leave his indelible mark on this great sport."

In other postseason award news, it was announced Thursday that the Phillies have two Gold Glove finalists in Wheeler and catcher J.T. Realmuto. Wheeler is up against Atlanta's Max Fried and Cubs pitcher. Realmuto's competition is Pittsburgh's Jacob Stallings and St. Louis' Yadier Molina. Winners will be revealed on Sunday, Nov. 7 at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN.

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