Bryce Harper is a former National League MVP, and is looking at a contract that has been speculated could exceed $400 million when he reaches free agency after the 2018 season. Bryce Harper is a four-time All Star and has played all three outfield positions. However, in Flushing the Mets currently have a young outfielder who has played all three outfield positions, and may be Harper’s equivalent. At least, he has been so far this season. Consider the following chart, which includes stats through last night’s game:
The first player is Mets’ fans own Michael Conforto, and the second stat line is of Bryce Harper. Both 24 years old, Harper is hitting for a higher batting average and has a higher on base percentage, but Conforto offsets this with more power, as measured by his higher slugging percentage. The OPS and OPS+ are virtually deadlocked for the Met’s division rivals.
This makes one appreciate the season Conforto is having just a bit more. Not impressed yet? Let’s judge (pardon the pun) Michael Conforto against the Met’s cross-town rival outfielder, Aaron Judge who is actually a year older and has manned only the corner outfield spots:
Conforto has a higher batting average, higher on base percentage, the same number of extra base hits despite more than 20 fewer plate appearances, and Conforto actually has 1 more RBI despite many games in the leadoff spot. Conforto has more game power, as measured by slugging percentage, and his OPS and OPS+ is also higher than his cross-town counterpart.
This jury member votes for Michael Conforto as the better hitter. Case closed!