(WUSA) -- It was a move the Nationals hoped they wouldn't have to make, but in the end, turned out to be a necessary one.
The Washington Nationals announced Friday that they have called up 19-year old phenom Bryce Harper. Harper will make his major league debut on Saturday.
In a conference call Friday afternoon, Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo said, "We needed an offensive player to come up and play corner outfield. We needed an impactful left-handed bat."
The Nationals feel that Bryce Harper is that guy.
The team had hoped to be able to wait to call up Harper until later in the season, but injuries to Michael Morse and Ryan Zimmerman necessitated the move.
"This isn't the optimal mental situation for Bryce," said Rizzo. "We will reevaluate whether we will keep him up in majors upon Zims return."
To make room for Harper, the Nationals placed Ryan Zimmerman on the 15-day DL.
Stephen Strasburg is scheduled to start for the Nationals on Saturday. Ironically, Strasburg made his major league debut the day after the Nationals drafted Bryce Harper. The two players deemed to be the key to the franchise's future, once again will share the spotlight.