It was a week of personal feats for Harper, who also helped the Nationals achieve the best start in franchise history (Nationals/Expos) as they posted a 9-1 record through the season's first 10 games. Harper took a vicious swing on a bases-loaded 1-0 pitch from Julio Teheran on Thursday afternoon and became the first player in Major League history whose 100th career home run and his first career grand slam came on the same swing.
At 23 years, 181 days old, Harper became the eighth-youngest player in MLB history to reach the 100-home run mark, joining Mel Ott (22 years, 132 days), Tony Conigliaro (22 years, 197 days), Eddie Mathews (22 years, 292 days), Alex Rodriguez (23 years, 16 days), Andruw Jones (23 years, 62 days), Miguel Cabrera (23 years, 127 days), and Johnny Bench (22 years, 161 days). Harper was younger than Albert Pujols (23 years, 185 days), Hank Aaron (23 years, 191 days) and Ken Griffey Jr. (23 years, 206 days) when he hit the 100-homer mark.
But that was just the start of a power-filled weekend for Harper, who joined Ryan Zimmerman and Ian Desmond as the only players in Nationals history (2005-present) to eclipse the 100-homer milestone in a Nationals uniform. He followed his 100th longball with three more, setting a new career high and matching a Nationals record with home runs in four straight games. He enters Monday sitting on the precipice of becoming the first player in franchise history to hit one in five consecutive contests.
With home runs in all three games the Nationals played in Philadelphia April 15-17, and dating back to 2015, Harper tied Ernie Banks (1955) as the only visiting players in MLB history to homer in six straight games in Philadelphia.
This is the fourth Player of the Week award of Harper's career after he took home three during his 2015 NL MVP campaign (May 4-10, May 11-17, & Sept. 14-20, 2015), and his first of 2016. It is the 19th such honor for the Nationals organization.
Harper adds to the haul brought in by Max Scherzer (June 15-21 & Sept. 28-Oct. 4), Stephen Strasburg (Sept. 14-20, 2015 & June 7-13, 2010), Jordan Zimmermann (Sept. 22-28, 2014; June 2-8, 2014), Adam LaRoche (Sept. 1-7, 2014), Jayson Werth (June 30-July 6, 2014), Ryan Zimmerman (July 16-22, 2012; Aug. 15-21, 2011; July 30-Aug. 5, 2007), Josh Willingham (July 27-Aug. 2, 2009), Cristian Guzman (Aug. 25-31, 2008), and Nick Johnson (May 31-June 6, 2005) as honorees.