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Phillies slugger Bryce Harper homers for his first 2 hits of the season

PHILADELPHIA — Bryce Harper's first hit song of the season is a big one. The same goes for his second.

Harper homered in each of his first two at-bats for Philadelphia on Tuesday night against Cincinnati. The two-time NL MVP is 0-for-11 in three of the Phillies' first four games.

Harper, 31, hit a 1-2 fastball to center off deep off Graham Ashcraft in the first inning. The 420-foot single shot has an exit velocity of 107.7 mph.

He came up again in the fourth inning and hit another single to right. The 367-foot home run on the first pitch gave Harper his 1,000th career run.

This was Harper's 26th career multi-homer game. The seven-time All-Star last accomplished the feat on August 16, 2023, in Toronto.

Harper was dealing with back tightness at the end of spring training, which may have contributed to his slow start. It was his first full season playing first base after reconstructive elbow surgery forced him to move from right field.

He fell into a photographer's well on Saturday before resting Sunday's 5-4 win over Atlanta.

The Phillies said it was a scheduled rest day, but after the game manager Rob Thomson said Harper was in pain. Thomson was noncommittal about Tuesday night's game with Harper due to concerns about the weather forecast, but he kept the slugger in the lineup.

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