Bryce Harper has gone on record this offseason calling baseball a “tired sport.” After the Washington Nationals downed the Atlanta Braves 4-3 in the season opener, the Nationals outfielder made another statement wearing a hat that read “Make baseball fun again” while talking to reporters.
Harper could not be more on point here. His comments certainly caught some backlash and while everyone is entitled to their opinion, it’s hard to call baseball a “fun” sport celebrating players are punished in the form of a fastball to his back. It’s even worse if there’s an “Unwritten code” that supports such backlash.
That’s not to say that there’s anything wrong with understated celebrations. If someone hits a home run and jogs around the bases with his head down, that’s fine. But the comments that Goose Gossage made to ESPN’s Andrew Marchand regarding Jose Bautista were way off base.
“Bautista is a f—ing disgrace to the game,” Gossage told ESPN. “He’s embarrassing to all the Latin players, whoever played before him. Throwing his bat and acting like a fool, like all those guys in Toronto. [Yoenis] Cespedes, same thing.”
Those are the kind of comments that Harper seems to be railing against with his hat. For my money, he can’t wear this hat enough during the course of the season.
Just in case anyone needs a reminder, baseball is a game and it’s supposed to be fun.