The Washington Post

Bryce Harper, looking ill

Bryce Harper was sick on Tuesday, and he was still sick on Wednesday. Davey Johnson said he looked like Casper the Ghost. The TV announcers for both teams pointed out repeatedly that he looked like hell.

And never was this more obvious than in the top of the sixth. During that frame, Harper led off, had a seven-pitch at-bat, doubled, advanced to third on a grounder, and scored on an Adam LaRoche single. He also hunched over onto his knees at least six or seven times — repeatedly spitting while doing so — wiped his mouth at least once with his hand and at least once with his arm, turned his head to spit while running home from third, exhaled deeply in an uncomfortable fashion a couple times, and looked for all the world like a man about to lose his lunch all over the playing surface.

“He’s not feeling good right now. Look at that,” F.P. Santangelo said during the at-bat, as seen above. “That guy just wants to play….As sick as he was last night — and he was up the whole night before — he was in the dugout with his battling gloves on, bat in his hand, telling Davey Johnson he was ok to hit late in the game.”

“He is some kind of chiefin’ out this at-bat,” Santangelo said later, when again Harper looked ready to lose it at home plate. “He almost went hands on the knees after that swing.”

After the double, while Harper was repeatedly hunched over near second base, Santangelo just started laughing.

“Unbelievable,” he said. “Look at that. I mean, he’s not feeling it. That whole at-bat he was just fighting to get through the AB. What was it, a 6-, 7-pitch at-bat and he finishes it with a double to go 3-for-3? I mean, the legend is growing folks. This is a guy who almost couldn’t make it through the at-bat; he finishes it with a double down the line. Hitters can hit. It doesn’t matter if they’re sick or not.”

(Many of these images look similar, but they show at least four different episodes of Harper going hands-to-knees while standing at second.)

“Bryce Harper in some kind of scuffle with his health tonight, but not at the plate,” Santangelo later said, while he still stood at second base.

“You can tell that Harper does not feel well tonight either,” one of the Marlins announcers said at the same time. “A couple of times he’s stepped out of the box. He’s as white as a sheet out there at second base.”

Harper kept hunching over at third, too.

Again, he repeatedly hunched over.

After he scored, Harper bumped some fists, sat down, and was handed a drink. Then he hunched over again, this time completely out of view. And he stayed like that for a while.

When I feel like I’m on the verge of vomiting, I curl up on a sofa and wish for deliverance. Bryce Harper helped the Nats manufacture a run.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.



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Dan Steinberg · April 18, 2013