Bryce Harper has not been playing his best baseball at the start of his first season in Philadelphia.
Tuesday was not one of Bryce Harper's better nights wearing a Phillies uniform.
Philadelphia's prized free-agent acquisition went 0-for-4 at the plate with two strikeouts and had a late error and was partially responsible for giving up a hit to shallow right field that sparked a run for the Tigers in their 3-1 victory over the Phillies.
Naturally, the crowd in Philadelphia made sure to let the six-time All-Star and 2015 NL MVP know what it felt about his play, and Harper was booed.
"I'd do the same thing," Harper said according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. "It's not fun to lose, it's not fun to watch when you're playing that way. [I was] 0-for-4 with two punchies, I'm probably thinking the same thing walking back to the dugout."
The Phillies are 16-13 and at the top of the NL East, but Harper has left plenty to be desired.
His .240 batting average is the worst of his career in March and April, and since April 6, he's only been hitting .188 and has 29 strikeouts in 97 plate appearances. However, Harper is still leading the NL in walks per plate appearance and is in the top 20 in runs created per 27 outs.
"I don't think that baseball is meant to be evaluated in that short a period of time," manager Gabe Kapler said. "There's going to be ups, there's going to be downs for even the best hitters in baseball. This is just a stretch that Bryce is struggling through."
"I feel fine," Harper said. "Just keep missing pitches. That's about it. Swing feels good, hands feel good. Just swinging at pitches out of the zone. Pretty much the same thing. Just trying to swing at a pitch over the plate and not miss it. If I can cut down on swinging on pitches out of the zone, get on base for the guys behind me, then I'll be successful."