Must Be Nice Bryce

413 feet?

Jim Rome
August 16, 2019 - 9:52 am
Bryce Harper

USA Today

Categories: 

Let’s be REAL: this has not been the year that the Philadelphia Phillies were expecting. And it hasn’t been the year that Bryce Harper was expecting. Neither has lived up to the hype or expectation. 

As a team, you don’t go out and add a collection of all-stars, including Harper at 330 mill, just so that you can be part of the wild card race in August. You do it to win divisions and stack rings.

But for any number of reasons, it just hasn’t worked out that way this year for either the Phils or Harper. The whole season has been one step forward, two steps back. They’re just not getting it done. He’s not. And they’re not. 

In fact, winning the first two games of the series against the Cubs was one of the rare times this year when they’ve actually won back-to-back games against a team over .500. They just haven’t been able to string together wins against good teams.

So it was no shock when they had a chance to sweep last night and promptly fell behind 5-0 through five innings. Yu Darvish was dealing for the Cubs and the Phillies just couldn’t get much going. Which makes sense.

For some reason, the Phillies this year just can’t have nice things. They can win two games in a series against the Cubs, but they’re looking at losing Jake Arrieta for the season.

Even the power of the sweet baby blue throwback unis weren’t enough to get Philadelphia’s bats going. Or bringing back old man Charlie Manual. 

They did make it 5-1 in the bottom of the 8th. Then added a couple more in the ninth to make it look a little better than it actually was. That’s when Bryce Harper came to the plate with the bases loaded. He fouled off the first two pitches. Took two balls. Fouled off another pitch.

And then this.

RING THE DAMN BELL.

Walk off grand slam. Win the game. Sweep the series. One game back in the wild card. And again, if we’re being real: that was freaking electric. That’s what they brought him to do. That’s why they’re paying him over $300 mill. For moments like that. 

Did you hear John Kruk on that? Kruk is a dude who could swing it and did it for the Phillies: and even he lost his mind, quote  OH MY GOD!

Dude sounded like he just saw a UFO.  Or Randy Johnson. Or someone told him to take down his glorious greasy mullet back in the day.

I don’t know if the baseballs are juiced or not: I don’t even care at this point: that was a bomb: absolute moonshot. I wasn’t sure it was going to come down. The stats on it do not tell the whole story. In fact, if you’ve ever been wondering if numbers lie, this is a time where they do, because the numbers are:

113 mph exit velo

40 degree launch angle

413 feet

413 feet? Are you kidding me? If I told you someone hit a ball 413 feet it sounds pretty nice, but nothing to get worked up about. The only reason that ball went 413 feet was because the second deck of the stadium stopped it from going a thousand feet.

Run that back again.

Again, Harper hasn’t had the season that he would’ve liked, but there are few people on this planet who can tie into a ball the way he can. That was smoked.

And the only thing faster than the ball leaving the park was Harper’s trip around the bases. He took off like it was going to be an inside the park home run. He took off like someone had put 330 mill on home plate.

He nearly caught up to Rhys Hoskins who was ahead of him on the bases.

And then there was the postgame interview. And if you thought Bryce was going to have calmed down by the time they got to him on the field, you were wrong.

THAT WAS SICK. WOW.

And that was so needed, not just for the Phillies, not just for Harper, but for baseball. Because Bryce Harper is on a short list of the guys in baseball who can give you that kind of electric moment. That’s why he’s a superstar, even when he isn’t putting up superstar numbers.

THAT WAS SICK. WOW. He needs more of that. The Phillies need more of that. And baseball needs more of that. Everyone needs more of that, except the Cubs, who while looking at being swept, still couldn’t make a five run lead stand up. Handle your bullie, Joe Maddon: go sacrifice goat or do whatever you do that allegedly makes you Joe Maddon, because what you did right there ain’t gonna cut it.