Here’s who did not predict Bryce Harper was going to steal home on Sunday night: Cole Hamels. (Video here.)
Here’s who did: Dave Jageler.
Jageler, half of the Nats’ peerless radio broadcast team (flagship station: 106.7 The Fan, yay!), was perfectly prescient on Sunday night, as Harper began creeping toward home on a previous Hamels pickoff attempt. Audio below, please do listen.
“Harper, getting a big lead off third, scampers back as Nix throws back to the mound,” Charlie Slowes narrated.
“Yeah, he’s kind of measuring it,” Jageler observed. “If he throws over again, you might see Harper try to dash home.”
“That’d be something, wouldn’t it?” Slowes remarked. “You think about things like that, as we recognize the guy who might have done that in his day, Willie Mays, 81st birthday today.”
Then Harper stole home. Then Slowes freaked out.
“HE IS...SAFE!” Slowes told listeners. “HE IS SAFE!!!! HE IS SAFE AT THE PLATE, AND THE NATIONALS LEAD, ONE TO NOTHING! BRYCE HARPER! STEALS HOME! A STANDING OVATION FOR BRYCE HARPER!”
And so on and so forth.
“Charlie,” Jageler said at the end, “you could see it coming.”
(In fairness, the Phillies color analyst was also all over this.
“When you throw over to first like that and you’re a left-handed pitcher, you better throw it hard, because that guy’s coming down the line and you don’t see him,” he said, seconds before Harper dashed for home.
“There it is,” he said sadly. “You can’t be lobbing it over to first. You know, it’s elementary. I just said it. You’ve got to throw it hard when you do that, when you have a guy doing the things he was doing down the line, because he might try to steal home.”)
First noted by William World News.