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Bryce Harper wears gold cleats, Melky Cabrera goes orange at All-Star Game

The 2012 MLB All-Star Game turned into a bit of a fashion show in Kansas City. As you can see in the photos above, Bryce Harper and Melky Cabrera really stood out with their flashy footwear. Cabrera, who took home MVP honors, wore bright orange cleats from Nike (David Wright wore them too) and went 2-for-3 with a 2-run home run in them. Harper wore gold Under Armour cleats and went 0-for-1 with a walk and strikeout, and he also whiffed on a ball in left field.

Below is a closer look at Harper’s cleats:

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Bryce Harper says he doesn’t party and doesn’t drink

When Bryce Harper ripped a reporter in Toronto for asking him if he was going to have a beer after the game, he wasn’t just trying to embarrass the guy for asking a lame question that had nothing to do with baseball. Had the reporter done his homework, he would have known that Harper doesn’t drink and doesn’t party. He is a Mormon, which is a religion that forbids the consumption of alcohol. During a recent interview with Holden and Danny on 106.7 The Fan, Harper explained why the question annoyed him so badly.

“I’d rather be a good person off the field than a good baseball player on the field,” he explained. “I wanna be as good as I can be off the field for these fans and this town and I don’t wanna put anything into my body and do anything outside of this clubhouse that’s going to affect this team or anybody in this city or anything like that.

“I give everything I can every single day and I don’t wanna go out, I don’t wanna party, I don’t wanna drink or anything like that. So, when someone asks me a question that, I think it’s a little disrespectful and, you know, it was the first thing that came to my mind. Like I said, my body is a temple and I’m not going to put anything in it that will affect me or the way I play because I want to give everything I can for this team and this city every single day.”

Keep in mind, this is the 19-year-old kid who said he wants to be like Joe Namath by tearing it up on and off the field. These comments couldn’t be any more different from those ones. He said he doesn’t intend to be “Johnny Good” but instead have fun off the field as well. Perhaps he has had a change of heart, or perhaps Bryce is waiting until he turns 21 and accomplishes a lot more on the field before he begins that stage of his life. Whatever the case, the Harper we hear talking now sounds a lot more mature than the one who did stuff like this before he got the the majors.

Thanks to DC Sports Bog for sharing the interview with us

Photo credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Bryce Harper says being a firefighter is his backup plan to baseball

Bryce Harper is 19 years old and already a starting outfielder for a Major League Baseball team, but he has a backup plan in case the whole baseball thing doesn’t work out.

Answering a fan’s question for MLB.com’s Curly W Live, Harper was asked what he would do if he weren’t a baseball player. That’s when he revealed his offseason plans.

“I’d probably be a firefighter. Ever since I was growing up, I wanted to be a firefighter or a baseball player. Going into the offseason, I’m going to get my EMT and do the firefighting thing so I have something to fall back on.”

It’s actually quite admirable that Harper wants to help others and serve the community. It’s even more commendable that someone who has already made millions playing baseball still plans on learning and training in other fields. But what’s funny about the quote is how Harper mentioned being a firefighter is his backup plan to baseball.

Harper is one of the most talented prospects in years and on pace to become one of the most successful 19 year olds in baseball history. Teenagers that can hit .283/.481/.836 in the big leagues don’t need backup plans. But it is admirable that Harper thinks that way, and the comment is going a long way toward repairing what was a bad reputation.

via D.C. Sports Bog
Photo credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Bryce Harper gets a pie to the face in his new trademarked shirt (Video)

That’s a clown pie, bro.

Jayson Werth gave the 19-year-old a shaving cream pie to the face after the Nationals defeated the Giants 9-4 on July 4th. It’s all fun and games right now in Washington as they have the best record in the NL and a  four-game lead in the East. The Nationals haven’t seen this much potential since, I don’t know, 1994 when the team was in Montreal (Felipe Alou still blames not giving Jobu enough rum for the strike).

Nice advertising spot for Under Armour, as well. Somebody just needs to go arrest every vendor on the street in Washington selling unlicensed “Clown Question, Bro” merchandise and they may turn a profit someday.

H/T Busted Coverage

Bryce Harper says he’d vote for Chipper Jones over himself for All-Star Game

Bryce Harper is believed by many to be the favorite to win the annual MLB All-Star Game Final Vote out of the National League. His steepest competition will be Chipper Jones, who has said that this will be his last major league season. Chipper has made seven All-Star teams in his 19-year career, and many believe number eight would be the perfect way to cap off his Hall of Fame-worthy career. Harper is one of those people.

“I think a Hall of Famer should be able to go to the All-Star game his last year,” Harper said when asked about the Final Vote according to Amanda Comak of the Washington Times. If I was going to vote, I’d go vote for Chip.”

The other three finalists from the NL are Aaron Hill, Michael Bourn, and David Freese. Barring an amazing turn of events, either Harper or Chipper will take the honors.

The moment the Nationals called Harper up to the bigs, most of us were more excited to see the ridiculous things he would say and do to make headlines rather than his superstar abilities. To his credit, Harper has kept his mouth shut when he has to and said all the right things. The clown question incident was completely warranted. His comments about Chipper are another example of a series of moments that could possibly indicate that the rookie gets it.

H/T Eye on Baseball
Photo credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Bryce Harper asks ‘Clown Question Bro’ beer maker to raise money for slain officer

You may knock Bryce Harper for his perceived immaturity. Or for his inherent arrogance. Or for the way he handles the media. But what he’s doing for the family of a gunned-down police officer might make you want to change your opinion of him.

Celena Hollis, a seven-year vet of the Denver Police Department and a single mother to a 12-year-old daughter, was shot and killed on Sunday working off-duty as security for a local jazz concert. Harper and the Nationals were arriving in Denver earlier this week for a four-game set against the Rockies when he found out about the 32-year-old’s slaying.

Soon after, someone on behalf of Harper got in touch with Denver Beer Co., which made news a couple weeks back for creating its “Clown Question Bro” beer, named for Harper’s now-famous answer to a question from the media, and recommended the brewery donate a portion of the beer’s profits to Hollis’ memorial fund.

“It’s exciting to hear from Bryce,” Denver Beer Co. co-owner Charlie Berger told the Washington Post. “We were making this beer just for fun. We never thought it would pick up to this extent. First of all, we’re definitely flattered. More important, the fact that he was making a lot of good come from it, it’s valiant. It says something about Bryce.”

Denver Beer Co. plans to follow through with Harper’s suggestion. It will give the family time to grieve before officially reaching out to them.

Photo: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Leaving Bryce Harper out of Home Run Derby is latest example of MLB screwing up All-Star Game

Matt Kemp is the captain of the National League Home Run Derby team at next month’s All-Star Game, and he says he’s picked out his squad. Despite his prodigious power, Nationals rookie Bryce Harper didn’t make Kemp’s cut.

“It’s not because he’s a rookie. It’s just that there are other guys out there that are capable,” Kemp told USA TODAY Sports. “I’m not saying he wouldn’t do a good job in the Home Run Derby. He’s going to have plenty of time to participate in many Home Run Derbies. Just not this year. Nothing against him. I love watching him play.”

Kemp says he based his decision on stats, and Harper is only tied for 50th in the National League with 7 home runs. Based on his reasoning, it’s understandable why Harper was left off. And given that Kemp is captain, he can choose whomever he wants based on whatever criteria he wants. He’s doing nothing wrong.

The problem is that MLB has screwed things up once again.

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