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Seven MLB stars who need to step up in 2020

The MLB season is just around the corner and with players reporting for spring training, the work begins for some of the game’s biggest stars. For many of MLB’s stars, the pressure will be on from fans and the organization to step up and deliver on expectations in 2020.

Bryce Harper and Manny Machado were among the biggest signings in baseball just a year ago. After delivering underwhelming performances in 2019 and seeing their team fail to reach the postseason, both stars must find a way to take their game to a new level this season. The pressure to perform will be on other big names, too.

Whether you’re a star coming off a disappointing season or just signed a record contract, no excuses will be made for failure. Everything will be on the line this season and it all starts now. Here are the seven MLB stars who need to step up this season and deliver big performances for their teams.

While ticket prices soared after the Phillies signed Harper to a $330 million deal, the team did not. Philadelphia went 81-81 with Harper in 2019, just a one-game improvement from the previous season without him. Meanwhile, the Washington Nationals moved on from Harper and won the World Series.

It’s not that 35 homers and a .882 OPS were bad, but the Phillies paid Harper to be an MVP-caliber player. Harper must improve when there aren’t runners on base, a situation in which he posted a .719 OPS this past year. If the Phillies are going to contend in the division this season, Harper needs to step up with an MVP-like season. If he can do that, this team has a shot to hoist the World Series trophy.

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