Legends On Deck

Harping For The Wrong Reasons?

Image taken by Katherine Frey of the Washington Post

Yet again, the Nationals star has made the headlines and not for the right reasons. Bryce Harper has been suspended for one game and has also received an undisclosed monetary fine for confronting an umpire over balls and strikes during Monday’s 5-4 win over the Detroit Tigers. Harper was tossed in the 9th inning for yelling at the umpire from the dugout. A few pitches later, Clint Robinson hit a pinch-hit game winner for the Nationals. Harper ran out from the clubhouse, and joined his team during their celebration. He had what he claimed to be “a couple of choice words” for umpire Brian Knight.

Analysts and baseball fans across the world have begun to harp on how Bryce needs to grow up and be an icon for all the young kids growing up. Though he did have a poor choice of words and made a poor decision to even act up after the game winner, Harper getting ejected is not the worst thing for baseball. If anything, America’s past time NEEDS Harper.

The Yankees vs Red Sox rivalry has died, the Steroid Era is over so home runs have dropped, the MLB has banned collisions, and the list continues. All excitement has vanished. Harper, himself, has lit up the beautiful game and has drawn attention from long time fans and has even brought in new fans. All the talk of him being arrogant and selfish needs to die down. Harper was ejected over arguing his teammates balls and strikes, not his own. Though it may seem “prima donna”-like because calls didn’t go the Nats way, Harper’s passion for winning fuels a fire in him that no one can seem to stop.

Although batting just .257, Harper has become such a threat to opposing pitchers that he is receiving Barry Bonds treatment. He was walked six times in one game against the Cubs on May 8th. He became the first player in MLB to reach base seven times without recording an official at bat. Clearly, Harper isn’t just flash, but the talent is there to back it all up.

Whether you love him or hate him, Harper has taken over the show. He is the face of Washington D.C. and will be the face of any franchise, if he decides to leave the Nationals in 2018.

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