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Friday, February 22, 2019

Nats manager will speak with Bryce Harper about lack of hustle

Bryce Harper hustle

New manager, same old problem for Bryce Harper.

Harper did not run out a ground ball he hit in the fifth inning of the Washington Nationals’ 4-2 loss to the New York Mets on Friday. The Mets had an easy double play as a result:

There were runners on first and second with one out, so there is no reason Harper should have taken that as a gimme double play and given up. Had he beaten it out, the Nats could have had runners on the corners with two outs for Matt Adams, which would have been a good run-scoring opportunity.

Nationals manager Dave Martinez said after the game that he will address the issue with Harper.

Martinez did note that Harper brings the right focus every day, but it’s clear there was a problem with his effort on that particular play.

No matter how you slice it, it’s a bad look for Harper. He’s been scuffling since June and batting under .200 since then, so he is obviously frustrated. That’s still no excuse for not hustling. We’ll see if Martinez handles things similarly to how previous manager Matt Williams did.

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