It took quite some time for Bryce Harper to reach the visiting clubhouse at Nationals Park after three postgame interviews on the field. It didn’t seem like his night would end so well. A trio of media outlets spreading his name and face across the continent and world.
Bryce Harper was hoping for a nice reception in his return to D.C. Tuesday. “I’m sure there’ll be some boos; it’s part of the game,” he said in an interview over the weekend. Before Harper could even take the field, fans began to boo. He waited in the dugout as they jeered in an overwhelming tone throughout the stadium. They donned altered 40-year-old dad arts and crafts style jerseys and signs their wives had made for them.
Harper had a slow start to the contest. But then, it happened. Like a cannon, or a ground-to-air missile, Harper swung and crushed the ball. He obliterated the baseball farther than all but two of the 608 balls he hit at Nationals Park over the previous four years. And then he followed that with an epic bat flip, to shame the most nifty of drum majors. Last night’s contest means the Phillies are 4-0 for the first time in 104 years.
Harper has hit three home runs in his first four games as a Phillie. Fans and analysts are already clamoring, saying that his “F1 engine of a swing” could drop a gear or blow a piston at any time, the way it happened last year when he hit .214 for the entire first half.
But what if this is the opening paragraph to the next chapter in his baseball life career. What if the $330 million, changing teams through free agency and a notoriously demanding baseball city mean comfort, not pressure. That would mean this is the new Bryce Harper, and one we should grow used to quickly. It remains to be seen how his development will continue, but it’s a career I’m excited to follow.
Where they stand now: With an 8-2 win over the Nationals, the Phillies improved to a perfect 4-0 on the season. It’s the first time Philadelphia has started a season with four wins since 1915.
This article was written using a press release and information from multiple outlets. Media in this article is courtesy of ESPN and SI. For more college, pro and high school sports, follow us on Twitter @MWSNsports or like our page on Facebook.