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Bryce Harper doesn’t pay attention to the standings

Sep 21, 2012, 9:40 AM EDT

bryce harper getty Getty Images

From, we learn that Bryce Harper does not wake up each morning and check the standings. From the scene of last night’s playoff-clinching celebration:

“Everyone started going crazy and I looked at the fireworks and said ‘I guess we just did something.’ Someone handed me a playoff hat and a playoff shirt and I said ‘I guess we are going to the playoffs … I had no clue. I had no idea,” he said.  When the guy handed me this shirt, he just handed it to me and I was wondering what it was and it said ‘playoffs.’ I was just wondering like, ‘what happened?’ I guess we clinched a playoff berth.”

For what it’s worth, I can’t remember what was going on in my head when I was 19 so I can’t sit here and judge.


  1. pmcenroe - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    I’ve never taken any issues with Harper before (seems like an OK dude) but come on, you are a professional athlete and you AREN’T obsessed with winning/making the playoffs?

    • kevinleaptrot - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:47 AM

      Dude, try the decaf next time.

    • kkolchak - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:50 AM

      I didn’t take it that way at all, but instead as Harper focusing on the fact that the Nats’ job isn’t done by a long shot. The fans might be all jacked by the team clinching a WC spot, but it is pretty clear the players are concentrating on winning the division title. Even Davy Johnson was downplaying the importance of last night. So is HE a clueless teenager?

      • pmcenroe - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:56 AM

        “Everyone started going crazy and I looked at the fireworks and said ‘I guess we just did something.’

        Sure maybe he is trying to play it cool, but it seems ridiculous/disingenuous to pretend he had no idea until someone gave him a t-shirt.

    • hammyofdoom - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:28 PM

      To me this means that instead of focusing on the goal of playoffs he’s more “in the moment” and worried about tonight while leaving tomorrow for tomorrow. If anything I appreciate this, worrying about the playoffs is how people choke

  2. kevinleaptrot - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    Clueless teenagers!

  3. indaburg - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:50 AM

    “Playoffs? Don’t talk about–playoffs?! You kidding me?! Playoffs?!”

    I want to live in Bryce Harperland. I want to go to there. It’s such a happy, oblivious place.

    (You’ll have to forgive me this morning. Work is slow, I’m bored, and I had coffee this morning. I hardly ever drink caffeine so it’s like speed to me.)

    • cur68 - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM


      • indaburg - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:22 PM

        Good morning, cur. Nice of you to join us this morning. How are you today?

      • cur68 - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:32 PM

        Too much coffee, not enough sleep. My lip sweater is itchy, too.

      • indaburg - Sep 21, 2012 at 1:06 PM

        You mean your “womb bromb”? (shudder) Eh, you could always join Keith Hernandez and shave it off.

      • cur68 - Sep 21, 2012 at 4:34 PM

        Yeah, “lip sweater’ does it for me (sympathy shudder). Its only here because I’ve been up all night for the past few editing manuscript in between work; no time for personal grooming like shaving. I’m testing the theory that I’ll have a stroke before I have to present my findings.

  4. nolanwiffle - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:51 AM

    See ball, hit ball……see ball, hit ball……Nothing else matters. Kid’s got natitude.

    • papalurchdxb - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:13 AM

      see ball, catch ball……throw out guy at 3rd……(is how the other side of Bryce’s brain works)

    • indaburg - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:26 AM

      …see ball, hit ball, move to second on a ground out, steal third, steal home, la-dee-da… oh, shiny objects… so pretty…

    • natstowngreg - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      See ball, hit ball, just keep running…

  5. unlost1 - Sep 21, 2012 at 9:52 AM

    for the record, that’s a clown ANSWER, Bryce

  6. frenchysplatediscipline - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:23 AM

    I think it may be lost on everyone here, but all I have heard from the Nats is that they were aiming for a division title. Saw an interview with Davey saying his team wouldn’t be celebrating (in the clubhouse) for a WC berth.

    Wouldn’t shock me if more of the players had no idea til the fireworks went off. Harper just isn’t as polished with reporters yet and speaks his mind (and I kinda hope that never changes).

    To that club the magic number is now 8…

    • natstowngreg - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:38 AM

      It was not lost on us Nats fans, as our repsonses to this post indicate.

  7. kiwicricket - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:24 AM

    So, I take it someone handed him something?

    • sophiethegreatdane - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:49 AM

      The girl at Starbucks handed me this coffee, and was all like, “Whoa I must’ve ordered coffee.” I had no clue. When she handed me the coffee, she just totally handed it to me, which must have meant something, you know bra’?

  8. East Coast Raider - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:29 AM

    I can’t be inside the kid’s head, but he knew. He’s been giving very diplomatic answers all season long. I don’t believe someone as competitive as him could not be keeping track of playing in October.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:47 AM

      As others have mentioned in slightly different ways, the kid is a summa cum laude graduate of the “Derek Jeter School for talking to the Media”

      • natstowngreg - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:40 AM

        I once heard that Derek Jeter earned the highest grades in the history of the Crash Davis School of Baseball Cliches.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:48 AM

        Jeter wouldn’t know anything about his grades. He’s just going out there, taking it one game at a time and trying to help his team win ballgames.

      • sophiethegreatdane - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:52 AM

        Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, and sometimes it rains. Think about that for a while.

        In the meantime, I’m digging that Motley Crue song… “Rae-Ann, she’s a stay-ann….”

  9. sdelmonte - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:32 AM

    I am pretty sure when you were 19, Craig, you were thinking about girls, parties, your grades, girls, what you would do for a living, Batman, sports, and girls. I suspect that Bryce thinks about some of these.

    • nolanwiffle - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:35 AM

      …..all while “smoking” a bubble pipe.

  10. natslady - Sep 21, 2012 at 10:37 AM

    Look, they could have done the same thing in the 2nd game of the doubleheader. That was a great comeback and an annoying loss, but no one said, “Oh, we are in danger of missing the playoffs, the magic number is still at 1.” For the last two weeks, people around here had trouble CALCULATING the “magic number” for the 2nd wildcard. Seriously.

    The realmagic number is 8 (was 9). That’s the number everyone is focused on. That’s the number that’s on the front page of the newspaper every morning. If there is any number posted in the clubhouse, it’s that one.

    Us fans, us DC people, and Ryan Zimmerman, Desi, types that lived though the drought, yeah, we celebrated–a little. I’m gonna get one of those t-shirts (if there are any left), but I have no trouble believing Harper. The kid is INTENSE. Reportedly, he had a glass of sparkling cider with Adam LaRoche’s ten-year-old son. Think about that for a sec. For Thanksgiving, Harper still sits at the children’s table. OK, maybe not. :)

    • natstowngreg - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:34 AM

      One would think, the huge “NATS CLINCH!” on the scoreboard might have been a clue. But then, he was trotting to the infield, with his back to the scoreboard. By last night, being in the playoffs was a foregone conclusion, so Young Mr. Harper can be forgiven for looking forward to what lies beyond October 3.

      Those of us at the game celebrated more than a little. Even those of us who knew that clinching visiting field in the National League Death Match(tm) was not that important. What was important was the moment when Washington clinched post-season baseball for the first time isince the first FDR Administration (including 33 seasons with no team at all). In that context, It was a big deal.

  11. elmaquino - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:14 AM

    The way Harper talks just reeks of someone who’s watched way too much ESPN in his short lifetime

    • sophiethegreatdane - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:54 AM


    • nolanwiffle - Sep 21, 2012 at 1:44 PM

      Dude is as cool as the other side of the pillow.

  12. hisgirlgotburrelled - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    2 weeks left and you’ve been in first for a long time, fireworks go off and you don’t know why? You get handed a t-shirt and you still don’t know why? I hope he’s embellishing a bit. I understand not knowing how many wins clinches a playoff spot, but you have to know fireworks going off after the last out was not to celebrate some fan’s birthday. It doesn’t take much intelligence to realize what happened.

    It just comes off douchey because it’s a big deal for a Washington team to make it. You don’t have to act like you won the championship, but don’t act like it’s nothing. If they fall short this year then next year you can act like simply clinching a playoff spot is not a big deal.

  13. cur68 - Sep 21, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    Kid’s 19. Playing Major League Ball. I bet to him, ITS already the best EVER. Each day is a party. Each day is an affirmation that he, Bryce Harper, is a for real MLB player. “Playoffs”? Who cares? Even if it were the Astros (sorry Stex), it couldn’t get any better than playing ball. That’s how I’d have been at 19 and in MLB.

    • natslady - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:06 PM

      Yup. Kid’s never been on a losing team. Nats have been in first place 95% of the season, and have pretty much taken the playoffs for granted since mid-August. He knew the fireworks weren’t for winning the Division–Maybe he thought Desi’s wife arranged birthday fireworks. Maybe he forgot it was Thursday and thought it was a Friday fireworks show, who knows. Nats weren’t jumping up and down and making a human pyramid like the Royals beating the White Sox…. They were shaking hands, high-fiving and walking off the field. Someone hands him a t-shirt and oh, right, the second-wildcard, right, playoffs, OK, we’re good!

      • natstowngreg - Sep 21, 2012 at 2:33 PM

        Belated Happy Birthday to Ian Desmond and Steve Lombardozzi the Younger.

      • cur68 - Sep 21, 2012 at 4:42 PM

        hmmm…Nats’ I wrote you a long reply, mentioning how I don’t understand the Bryce Harper hate and such but WordPress ate it. I hate wordpress.

        Anyhow, in the off chance that wordpress doesn’t eat this one, I just wanted to say that Harper seems like a nice enough kid. I don’t get why people like that buffoon skids(insernumberhere) down below dislikes him. I mean, has he met the kid? Know any thing about him beyond baseball? skids(insernumberhere) and others of his ilk fit a theory of mine: stuff like this is basically a Rorschach Test. People who fabricate strong opinion on so little information secretly fear that they are what they accuse others of. Given what a judgmental, reactionary, small minded individual skids(insernumberhere) seems to be, I’d say my little theory has some traction.

    • skids003 - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:31 PM

      To be young and stupid and be a millionaire. Like the Kardashians. We are lucky you never made it cur. But not for these reasons..

  14. shawndc04 - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:50 PM

    For those of us who live in DC or the area, and who root for the team, Bryce’s statement is not surprising. His focus is on the game, not on the standings. He is more intelligent than people give him credit for, and he is guileless.

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