Phillies

Nationals fans show true colors, give up after 6 innings in Bryce Harper's return

Nationals fans show true colors, give up after 6 innings in Bryce Harper's return

WASHINGTON — The fans came out hot and grabbed all the headlines. On MLB.com, it read “Bryce booed heavily by raucous D.C. crowd.” However, as the game wore on, Nationals fans began to show their true colors. It was a sad display from a fan base that wanted to make a statement.

Walking the concourse before Tuesday night’s game, there was a buzz in the stadium. Nationals fans came out in full force with signs and defaced Harper jerseys. There was even a clown, or three. When Harper was introduced for his first at-bat, the boo birds came raining down on the once-beloved superstar.

The first at-bat was electric. Fans jeered Harper as Max Scherzer pelted the strike zone with upper-90s heat. It was a spectacle. It was what sports are all about. When Harper struck out, the fans erupted. They had their moment, and the upper hand, but that soon would fade.

After another strikeout, with Nationals fans feeling good, Harper laced a double to right, much to the dismay of the home fans, who, for the third time in the game, actually paid attention to what was going on.

Then, things took a drastic change.

With the Phillies leading 5-0, Harper batted with one on and two out. Suddenly, the boos weren’t as loud and the once boisterous fans weren’t so boisterous. The fan base had lost steam after three at-bats and less than two hours. 

As the sixth run crossed the plate, I heard one fan get up from his seat, look at his friend and say, “I hope we get them next time,” as he proceeded toward the exit. In the bottom of the sixth inning, fans raced toward the exit faster than the presidents who raced around the field a few innings earlier.

Signs once held proudly were left abandoned.

The seats, once full of nearly 35,000-plus fans, were empty.

All it took was six innings.

The Phillies fans that made the trip, many of whom camped out in right field to greet Harper each inning, and, perhaps, make him feel more comfortable than he otherwise would have felt, took over the stadium. While it was the Nationals fans who showed up in great numbers and voice early on, it was the Phillies fans who ultimately showed why Harper wanted to play for them for the next 13 years.

… and then this happened.

Harper crushed one 458 feet and the only fans left in the park, wearing Phillies red, gave their new hero a well-deserved applause.

You see, I don’t think Nationals fans were here to boo Harper. They were here to boo, so that Phillies fans couldn’t claim that they took over the stadium. It worked for the length of three at-bats and they simply gave up and went home, while the Phillies fans remained.

After all was said and done, the Phillies fans felt authentic, the Nationals fans felt fake and it was a huge night for Bryce Harper and not for the people who came here hoping to see him fail.

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It turns out Jeopardy host Alex Trebek isn't the biggest fan of the Phanatic

It turns out Jeopardy host Alex Trebek isn't the biggest fan of the Phanatic

Jeopardy has been home to some great moments regarding Philadelphia sports in the past.

 I wish this was another one of these moments ... but it's not.

 It turns out, the show's host host Alex Trebek isn't a big fan of the Phillie Phanatic ... I know, I'm hurt too.


 The Phillies are in disbelief, we all are.
 
 Of course, fans had quite the reaction to the video that surfaced on social media. After all, the Phanatic is the best mascot in all of sports (totally unbiased, of course).




 

I don't even want to know what he thinks about Gritty.

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Bryce Harper shares thoughts on Nationals playing in World Series without him

Bryce Harper shares thoughts on Nationals playing in World Series without him

Right around the time the Washington Nationals were clinching their World Series berth this week, a guy who left that team to come play in Philadelphia posted a cute photo to his Instagram story with his baby son. It included the caption, "cuddle time is the best time."

I made light of the juxtaposition of that photo with what Nationals players were currently doing in a tongue-in-cheek tweet, but it's hard not to think about Bryce Harper during this Nationals run.

We know exactly how Nationals fans down in DC feel about their former favorite slugger who departed DC for big time bucks. They won't stop telling us.

But what was Harper feeling? Thanks to a one-on-one interview Harper did with Jayson Stark of the Athletic, we now have a glimpse into Harper's mind during this unique time.

Stark says Harper was effusive in his praise of the city of Philadelphia during their chat. And the majority of Harper's answers are very savvy in a public relations sense. Harper is good at saying what you think he's supposed to say. But it doesn't come off as disingenuous.

Stark asked Harper if he was feeling any jealousy watching his old pals spray champagne in the locker room and his answer comes off as pretty honest. From the Athletic ($):

“No,” he said again, without a millisecond’s hesitation, “because like I said, I made my decision, and that was my decision. And it was the final decision that I made. You know, jealousy isn’t good. For me, it’s about having the gratitude to go out and do what I do each day and not having an attitude towards anybody else.

“I think it’s about being able to be the person that I am,” he went on, “and not saying to myself, `Oh my gosh, I can’t believe I’m not a National.’ Or, `Oh my gosh, those guys are doing what they’re doing. I can’t believe it. I’m so jealous.’ No. I’m so happy for them. You know how hard it is to get into the postseason and win games. For them to be able to put it together this year the way they have, it’s an amazing thing.”

There's plenty more to the piece worth diving into. Stark also spoke with former National/Phillie Jayson Werth, who knows a thing or two about both cities/clubs and also what it's like to play alongside Harper.

The Nationals' opponent in the World Series is yet to be set, but whether it's the Nationals, New York Yankees or Houston Astros who are spraying champagne at the end of it, you won't see Harper doing that. Unless he and his little baby pop up in his Instagram stories getting wacky.

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