Slugger Bryce Harper goes No. 1 to Nationals

By The Associated Press

SECAUCUS, N.J. — The Washington Nationals selected junior college slugger Bryce Harper with the No. 1 overall pick in the baseball draft Monday night.

Harper, a 17-year-old with prodigious power from the College of Southern Nevada, is one of the most-hyped players in draft history because of his eye-popping talent at the plate.

A year after taking similarly hyped right-hander Stephen Strasburg, the Nationals got him a potential batterymate, although Harper was announced as an outfielder at the draft site at MLB Network studios by commissioner Bud Selig.

The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Harper surpassed former big league pitcher Alex Fernandez, who went fourth overall to the Chicago White Sox in 1990, as the highest-drafted JUCO player.