RUSSELL: Bryce Harper cheated in the HR Derby? Get over it!

Chris Russell
July 17, 2018 - 1:05 pm

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Cubs fans -- you already have your World Series Championship. You don't need to be upset about anything. 

Hey, Chicago! What do you say? You already beat the Nationals in a five-game NLDS last October at Nats Park. Leave them and Washington D.C. the hell alone.

Don't do THIS! You don't need to be upset, as many of you were, or have any national pundits fight for you by stirring the pot after a mind-blowing Home Run Derby on Monday night at Nationals Park. 

"BryceGhazi"? C'mon! So what if Bryce Harper's Dad quick-pitched him a bit in the final seconds of the championship round to help the younger Harper tie Kyle Schwarber? 

He did. There's no doubt about that. However, throughout the night, as I watched almost every single pitch-and-swing of the derby in the nation's capital, there were several instances of this. 

It's a SHOW! It's not a science experiment where everything has to be measured precisely.

Major League Baseball had an umpire standing behind home plate, slightly angled off from the catcher, to control the pitcher from throwing the next pitch until the previous ball had landed, which was the written rule. 

That's on the umpire. Not Mr. Harper. Not Bryce Harper, if it's on anybody. Oh, and another thing: Do these critics and whiners not remember that Harper's Dad was firing several pitches low and inside, or out of the hitting zone, that his son could not even offer a swing at? 

That's right. There were several wasted pitches that would have cost Harper nothing but energy to swing at, and yet he couldn't even muster an effort. That cost him time. So please, stop whining. 

Harper's majestic bombs in regulation earned him extra time. He won the competition early in his bonus time, leaving over 20 seconds on the clock. In other words, even with the "quick-pitches" in regulation, he still had plenty left in the tank. 

The Home Run Derby was great for Harper. It was fantastic for the Washington Nationals, Washington D.C. and Nationals fans who have supported this team with very little reward in the playoffs. 

Oh, and it was GREAT for Major League Baseball. Let's enjoy it and stop the whining and crying!

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