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Warning: Harper's Body Issue cover will make you blush


Warning: Harper's Body Issue cover will make you blush

Bryce Harper took his clothes off for ESPN Magazine's Body Issue. You probably knew that already, or at least comprehended intellectually that was happening. But were you really prepared for what that would look like? 

Harper's Body Issue cover came out today. 

Goodness gracious. It's like that? I didn't know it was like that. Did you?

Holding a baseball in front of a red backdrop, the Nationals star is dressed in some dirt and hair gel. Ok, mostly hair gel. 

There's something about his expression -- a kind of steely-serious eye contact beneath furrowed brows -- that borders sultry. Even unnerving for those who remember him as a Mormon kid called up to the big leagues at age 19. 

In case there was any doubt, a suggestive crop well south of the slugger's hips drives home the point. 

Baseball has a new stud. 

Bryce's traps would like to alert you that the future is now. Yesterday's potential is today's 1.173 OPS and 5.5 WAR -- both tops in the MLB. 

ESPN's photographers deserve credit as some of the best in their business, too (and for watching D'Angelo's "Untitled" video a thousand times, but I digress). 

Instead of leaning on baseball uniforms and props (note the ball is practically hidden in Harper's hands), the image leverages lighting, color, pose and "wardrobe" to convey virility. It's a visual metaphor for coming of age that's universal rather than exclusive to the MLB. 

The Body Issue brings together elite physiques and photography. Portraits like Harper's are what makes it great. 

MORE NATIONALS: Nats sign 1st significant Latin prospect in years

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With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.


Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.


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It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.


Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.