Bryce Harper has to be happy with his stint at Lehigh Valley thus far.
On Wednesday, the Phillies slugger, working his way back from a broken left thumb, gave the Triple-A IronPigs a 6-5 win over the Gwinnett Stripers, thanks to a walk-off two-run double in the ninth inning.
On the night, the 29-year-old went 3 for 5 with two RIBs and a strikeout, serving as DH and hitting second.
In two games games with the minor league club, Harper is 5-for-8 with two homers, two doubles, three runs scored, six RBIs, two walks, and a ridiculous 2.325 OPS.
“I think any time you go out there and you’re able to put the bat on the ball and have good at-bats, see pitches, compete at a high level, it’s always good,” Harper said after Tuesday’s 10-5 win over Gwinnett.
Stripers pitchers are likely looking forward to Sunday’s matchup against the IronPigs, with the reigning NL MVP’s rehab assignment expected to end Saturday. He could return to the Phillies lineup as soon as Monday.
“A possibility, yeah,” Phillies interim manager Rob Thomson said Wednesday afternoon. “It just depends on how he feels. But that was pretty impressive last night [with two homers Tuesday].”
Harper, who injured his thumb on June 25, would be a welcome addition to a Philadelphia team fighting its way back into wild card contention. He was upfront about his inability to play right field in his return due to a torn UCL in his right elbow, but his offensive stats — a .318 average with 15 home runs, 48 RBIs and a .985 OPS this season — easily can make up for it.
“Bring him up. He doesn’t need more games,” second baseman Jean Segura said after the Phillies’ win over the Reds on Tuesday. “What is he doing down there? He’s ready. Hopefully he comes back quick. If he hit two homers, bring him up.”