By my calculations, 2,591 days (7 years, 1 month, 4 days) after I said the Washington Nationals primary rival would be the Philadelphia Phillies, there is no argument from either side that there is a rivalry. PROPHETIC! Cole Hamels sealed it when he threw at Bryce Harper, who exacted revenge by stealing home.
Hamels got suspended for 5 games which is like suspending a position player for batting practice. Dan Daly says Hamels flunked out of “old school” baseball (The Wash. Times), noting how long it took other 19 year old phenoms to get hit – 340 plate appearances for Ken Griffey, Jr. and FIVE YEARS for Mickey Mantle.
I think Hamels flunked when he said “old-school, prestigious way of baseball going.”
By the way, Kevin at Macho Row thinks Hamels got off easy. I think he got suspended for admitting throwing at Harper, if he had kept his mouth shut, MLB wouldn’t have had to issue the token suspension.
Nats GM Mike Rizzo went off on Hamels, calling him “fake tough,” which is entertaining, if not smart.
Shane Victorino blew a kiss to some Nats fans (DC Sports Bog, The Post) who were heckling him which is exactly what some expected Bryce Harper to do, except that…Harper has been on the high road (CSN Washington).
Thomas Boswell mentioned in his chat that the Phillies “may have just bought themselves years of Bryce Harper hell.” Speaking of Boswell, does anybody buy this (emphasis added)?
People ask me, “Who do you root for?” It always seems to disappoint them when I say, “Nobody. I don’t root for teams. I never have. But I do root for the people I really respect. And I root for them after they change teams.”
Didn’t think so…
Jayson Werth emailed DC media and said he is going to “see to it personally those people never walk down Broad Street in celebration again (Nationals Journal, The Post).” Short of using explosives or causing food poisoning, I don’t think that any one baseball player can do that, but it sounded good.
Then there is this Deadspin story: The Story Of The 40 Phillies Fans Who Took A Bus To Nationals Park (And The 38 Who Returned)
I wonder if Phillies fans will decide to invade Camden Yards in June now…
I’m eager to see how this rivalry develops — it isn’t just about the Cheesesteak/Half-Smoke Challenge anymore.
Nats-Phils rivalry now a two-way street - CSN Washington