Bryce Harper on RGIII comparison: ‘That’s just people being fans and saying things’

June 21, 2013

A month ago, a reporter commented to Bryce Harper that the situation surrounding his knee injury was a lot like Robert Griffin III’s. Harper scoffed and replied, “No it’s not. That’s a dumb comment.”

Harper and the second most famous knee in Washington sat down with Comcast SportsNet, and the Nats outfielder elaborated on why he feels that way.

“I just think people are going to say what they want to say and make things out of nothing,” he said. “It’s just something we needed to do to keep it in place. We needed to let the cortisone sit in there and the PRP sit in there.

“We didn’t want any movement in the knee. That was a big thing for that, just wrap it up and keep it stable. We were doing that for a couple of days. People will talk and speculate, and people always freak out because RGIII is here. It wasn’t anything close to that. I was very blessed and thankful for having that done and not to have surgery.”

Harper continued explaining why he thought the two situations were different.

“His was totally different,” Harper said. “That was something major and not even close to what I have. That’s just people being fans and saying things.”

I’m pretty sure that the comparison wasn’t an injury-to-injury sentiment, but a comparison in the “I’m invincible” mentality behind the decision to play through the injuries. Harper himself admitted that he should have gone on the DL before the wall crash in Los Angeles that aggravated a knee injury suffered. Here’s Harper on June 2, explaining why he didn’t take himself out of the lineup when he should have:

“I thought hopefully my body could have got past it. I think after I hit the wall here [in Atlanta], I think I should have went on the DL, just try to get better and came back 15 days later. With a lot of guys out, I wanted to stay in the lineup the way I was swinging it. Of course, I want to play every day. It’s something that, maybe I’ll learn more in my career to take off 15 days instead of lose the month or whatever it is.”

And here’s RGIII explaining why he didn’t take himself out of the lineup when he should have:

“I’m the quarterback of this team,” Griffin said. “My job is to be out there if I can play. … I’m the best option for this team. That’s why I’m the starter.”

At the time of their injuries, both players let their competitive nature and youthful exuberance get in the way of good sense. No, their injuries weren’t exactly the same, but both wound up paying a stiffer price because of their insistence on staying in the game.

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Dan Steinberg | June 21, 2013