Everybody loves a tale of redemption.
If you've ever watched a sports movie, the protagonists tend to be a downtrodden team or a down-on-their-luck athlete looking to make a comeback. Not many people tune into a baseball movie in which the team that everybody expects to win the league follows through and wins. While none of our 2015 comeback candidates are likely to be the subject of any movies, it's always fun to watch and see which players bounce back from a lousy season and wipe out the memories of 2014.
With that, here are ZiPS' 2015 bounce-back players:
2015 ZiPS: .280/.365/.494, 22 HR, 3.5 WAR
It's almost perverse that Harper would even have to be on a bounce-back list, but there's a confusingly large segment of fans who are starting to whisper about him being a bust after an injury-filled year that saw him dip to a .768 OPS and 13 home runs. What tends to be ignored when it comes to Harper is that while you can hardly call last year a productive one, he was still essentially a league-average player when healthy at age 21. Despite these setbacks, his career 121 OPS+ ranks 21st in baseball history among players through age 21 (min. 1,000 plate appearances), which is tied with some guy named Miguel Cabrera.