Nationals Manager Davey Johnson Says Bryce Harper Has to Quit Breaking Bats Out of Frustration


Bryce HarperWashington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper signed for almost $10 million after being drafted, so he certainly could afford nice things. However, he continues to prove that he can’t have nice things.

That’s because he’d probably break them in a fit of rage.

Harper’s potential is matched right now perhaps only by his temper when things don’t go his way on the baseball field. He’s someone who’s never really failed at anything on a diamond, but the major leagues are tough, even for hardball wunderkinds like Harper. So that leads to frustration, and that frustration continues to lead to broken equipment.

Harper has a habit of smashing his bats after bad at-bats, and while one might appreciate the intensity, it’s not exactly the best look. So much, in fact, that Washington manager Davey Johnson wants Harper to quit the amateur lumberjack act.

“He expects himself to do well every time up,” Johnson said, according to the Washington Post. “Sometimes, it doesn’t happen that way. He takes it out on something. He needs to quit that.

“I worry about the backlash of the helmet or the bat,” Johnson said. “But he’ll get through that.”

Or so we all think. Then again, Harper’s got a growing track record of bat smash-related incidents like this one. Or this one.

When Harper cut his face open with a bat smash last season, it probably should have been a lesson. A Nationals source told the Washington Post that Harper “doesn’t know how close he came to ending his career” with that folly. If that wasn’t enough to wake him up, it’s tough to believe Johnson’s words will either.

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