After lighting up the 2014 Home Run Derby in New York with a second place finish, Nationals superstar Bryce Harper opted to sit out the 2015 competition in Cincinnati, in part because his father, Ron, could not throw to him after having shoulder surgery.
On Tuesday, Harper told The Washington Post he has no plans to participate in the 2016 derby in San Diego, either.
In fact, Harper isn't sure if he'll ever do the Home Run Derby again. At least, that's how he feels as of July 5, 2016.
"I just don’t want to, plain and simple," he said after Tuesday night's loss to the Brewers. "I just don’t really wanna do it. I justs want to enjoy my time, sit on the side and watch it a little bit. I enjoyed watching [Todd] Frazier win it last year, [but] I just don’t feel like doing it. I don’t even know if I’m gonna do it next year or the next or any other time ever. I just don’t feel like doing it."
At 23, Harper has plenty of time to change his mind. He has the tools to be one of baseball's best sluggers for the next 10 to 15 years. There will be plenty of other opportunities, including in 2018 when the event is held at Nationals Park.
For now, though, Harper has no interest.
"You could say [it's] draining," he said. "I don’t know, I don’t want ot go out there and swing and swing and swing, I guess. [Petco Park] a good park to swing it in. You’re gonna get a lot of homers to left and a lot of homers to right. It’s a fun event, but I don’t know, I just don’t care for it."
Harper has already done it once, so this won't turn into a LeBron James and the dunk contest-type situation.
But some fans out there may hope he has a change of heart, particularly in the summer of 2018. We'll see.
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