Mar 2, 2012, 9:09 PM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Bryce Harper leads off first base during today's game against Georgetown.
VIERA, Fla. — Bryce Harper ambled to the plate for the bottom of the third inning, staring down Georgetown sophomore right-hander Jack Vander Linden, as a crowd of 1,341 at Space Coast Stadium watched, hoping to see Harper swing his mighty bat and see the baseball soar into the Viera sky.
And what did they get from the 19-year-old Nationals phenom? A drag bunt. Yes, a drag bunt. Not a terribly great one either. Vander Linden managed to corral the ball to the right of the mound and toss to first base a step ahead of Harper.
This is what everyone was waiting for? The game's best power-hitting prospect trying to beat out a bunt?
"Just a bunt," Harper said later, downplaying the whole thing. "I bunted a couple times this year. Just trying to work on things in spring training."
Perhaps it's the surest sign yet of Harper's new-found maturity. He could've swung for the fences, tried to hit the ball a country mile andRead more »
NL EAST STANDINGS
THE BASEBALL SHOW
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
Follow us on Twitter
- No DL yet, but Span bracing for possibility
- Nats lose as Reds rock Scherzer in rare poor outing
- How Scherzer decision could make another National an All-Star
- Span gets MRI; plus updates on Escobar and Zim
- Scherzer, Cueto face off as Nats take on Reds
- Fister still working out mechanical glitches
- Nationals again can't beat struggling Reds
- Span, Escobar exit game vs. Reds with apparent injuries
- Max Scherzer gets All-Star nod, two Nats left out
- Live Thread: Nationals open series vs. Reds