Throwing behind the baserunner from left field after a routine single? Sure, why not.
Bryce did a good one https://t.co/aMBvKDhDg8
— Dan Steinberg (@dcsportsbog) July 29, 2014
Adam LaRoche had to make a nice play to get the baserunner and keep him out of scoring position, but whatever: I like my Bryce wild and out of control, at least in July. Sports are fun.
Bryce Harper’s new “stack and jack” batting stance has been working. Since changing to it on July 18, he was 7-for-13 with one of his three home runs of the season coming into last night’s game. But then he decided to add a new wrinkle to it — some sort of batter’s box shuffle.
I have no idea what this is; I have never seen anyone do this.
It didn’t work, and resulted in one of Harper’s three strikeouts in an 0-for-4 day. Still, his production since the break has been promising. Hopefully it continues, because with Zimmerman now out* for the foreseeable future, the Nats desperately need the post-break Bryce, not the .244/.316/.366 pre-break version.
*Related: Yesterday’s game brought back RFK memories, with Hairston, Lobaton, and Espinosa in the starting lineup.
The first-place Nats won in 16 at Milwaukee last night on Ryan Zimmerman and the bullpen’s heroics, and Bryce Harper homered in a rehab start at Potomac, but this is what I choose to blog about:
Bryce Harper's t shirt tonight pic.twitter.com/6F4xPWIbuO (via @eric_smith34)
— Dan Steinberg (@dcsportsbog) June 25, 2014
If you can’t read it, Bryce’s t-shirt says, “I LOVE BAD PITCHES THAT’S MY XXXXX PROBLEM.” And if you don’t know what that’s a reference to, here’s A$SAP Rocky’s “F**kin’ Problems,” which is a jam:
And if it’s jams you want, here are my top three candidates for the 2014 Song of Summer, with a primary assist from Rubie Edmondson:
A list of injuries the Nats have suffered in this still-young season:
*Doug Fister, strained lat — Hasn’t pitched. Slated for a Single-A rehab start today.
*Wilson Ramos, broken hand — Played one game. Should be back around June 1.
*Ryan Zimmerman, broken thumb — Played 10 games. Should be back late May.
*Denard Span, concussion — Missed a week. Has an even worse than usual .293 OBP since.
That’s the No. 4 starter/big offseason acquisition, catcher/Opening Day cleanup hitter, third baseman/face of the franchise and centerfielder/leadoff hitter. Ouch.
And now this is happening:
Though the full extent of his left thumb injury remains unclear, the Nationals placed Bryce Harper on the 15-day disabled list with a thumb sprain after he visited a hand specialist and received an MRI on Saturday.
Oh, Bryce. He who missed 30-plus games last year may miss another 30 with this. Or not, but still. Hold me, Ray.
The Nats have persevered so far, going 14-11. That’s a 90-win pace. If the season ended today, they’d be a Wild Card team.
With Fister out, the Tanner Roark-Taylor Jordan debate has been settled. With Ramos out, new guy Jose Labaton has established himself behind the plate. With Zim out, Anthony Rendon moved to third and Danny Espinosa reemerged at second. And with Span out, well, the team doesn’t lose that much, really.
Maybe, in the long run, all this struggle makes them stronger. Hard to see a silver lining in Harper going down, though.
He was replaced in the lineup yesterday by 31-year-old utility man Kevin Frandsen. Someone named Steven Souza Jr. replaces him on the roster.
We just bought a new family car, and our primary concern was if it had a third row. Something tells me Bryce Harper did not share that concern.
The team at Shoreline Motoring built this amazing ’69 Camaro for Bryce Harper. It is powered by a supercharged CTS-V stroker LSA engine. The full custom interior includes an integrated iPad mini and paddle shifters. It is built upon a full custom chassis with Wilwood brakes and center locking Forgeline FS3P wheels mounted to the Forgeline Flush-Loc center lock conversion kit.
Ooooh, an integrated iPad mini. Fancy. (via Nats Enquirer)
It’s pretty clear from watching this day-after interview that Bryce Harper thinks the Nats should’ve retaliated the other night. [CSN Washington]
What you already knew: Bryce didn’t deserve to get plunked. [SB Nation]
Bryce Harper’s new mustache is a dirty little thing. [For The Win]
Braves sweep the Nats to take a 15.5-game lead in the NL East. [WaPo]
Tanner Roark made a successful debut in relief, at least. [Nats Journal]
O’s beat SD on Chris Davis’ 41st HR. 1.5 back in the WC. [Camden Chat]
Trent Williams, Meriweather sit for tonight’s preseason game. [The Insider]
Cooley interviewed Dan Snyder, who drinks “small beers.” [Bog]
Don’t worry, FroMo’s HR swing celebration isn’t going anywhere. [FTW]
John Wall considers himself the best PG in the NBA. [Point Forward]
The story of a guy sharting after getting dunked on by Gil. [Complex]
The biggest problem with last night’s bullshit “brawl” was the Nats clearly have lost focus. Maybe lost focus is putting it mildly, because based on a 54-59 season that has the team 14.5 games back in early August, it’s arguable the team lacked focus from the beginning.
But back to last night.
Harper hit a bomb off Braves starter Julio Teheran, and Harper took a few seconds to enjoy it. Everyone who’s watched baseball for a little while knows what happens next: Harper’s getting hit. This is the rule of the land, like getting boo’d wearing an Eagles jersey in the FedEx parking lots.
Don’t lie to yourself and say Harper didn’t show up Teheran, he did, we all saw it.
Hopefully the Nats hit true rock bottom in the top of the ninth yesterday, after Soriano and Krol blew a 7-4 lead. And then Bryce Harper hit the first walk-off homer of his career in the bottom half. Nats snap six-game skid, stand eight back. [Nats Insider]
Harper was so excited he high-fived a ghost rounding second base. [FTW]
The walk-off aside, Harper hasn’t been any good since April. [Nats Baseball]
Nats’ll be shutting down rookie fifth SP Taylor Jordan soon. [Nats Journal]
FLOTUS was at the Nats game yesterday. Love you, FLOTUS. [Bog]
The Nats have bigger problems than the hitting coach, Bowden. [Bog]
O’s drop third straight out in Kansas City. Stinky. [Steve Melewski]
Notes from Day 1 of Skins training camp. RGIII looked great. [The Insider]
This woman lost her shit after not getting a Redskins autograph. [FTW]
Pierre Garcon: “We have the potential to be the best offense ever.” [USAT]
Columnist predicts 12-win season for the Skins. “Count on it!” [Jason Reid]
Adam Carriker needs 4-5 months to recover from quad surgery. [The Insider]
FroMo says Mazda is refurbishing his ’91 ride that’s already kinda tight. [FTW]
Wall okay in Team USA scrimmage. Had a nasty putback. [Bullets Forever]