Let’s face it, Nats fans. Bryce Harper is a hothead and a jerk. Just ask anyone in Atlanta or Philadelphia. This kid has the audacity to come up to the Major Leagues, and well, be Bryce Harper. And since the constant media scrutiny will not go away any time soon, we have come up with the Bryce Harper Jerk-O-Meter to measure all the ways the young phenom has been a jerk.
Watching his home run
Bryce Harper hit a home run on Tuesday night, and watched it sail clear into the night sky. It was the longest home run in his young career, and the longest this year at Nats Park. And yet, it took Harper a full 23.66 seconds to round the bases. It was Harper’s slowest home run trot by more than 1.5 seconds, which proves he was totally hot dogging it. Never mind that Justin Upton’s home run the night before was about 4 seconds slower, because we’re focusing on what a jerk Bryce Harper is.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: 0.7
Grabbing his crotch in last year’s NLDS
After striking out in the 9th inning of game 5 of the NLDS last year (sorry if this is still a touchy subject), Bryce Harper grabbed his crotch. Whether this was a gesture aimed at pitcher Jason Motte or an unconscious baseball move is still up for debate. Surely after this game, there were bigger and more important issues to think about than a frustrated 19 year old’s crotch, but the media took notice.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: 4.8
Making it to the big leagues
Yes, Bryce Harper made it to the big leagues at a historically young age. This was apparently enough of a jerk move to make Cole Hamels nail him in the back with a fastball. Hamels admitted this was a “Welcome to the Big Leagues” pitch. Well, good for Hamels. I mean, how else will young jerk Bryce learn that he’s in the big leagues?
JERK-O-METER SCORE: 0.1
After Bryce was intentionally plunked, he stole home. What kind of jerk move is that? First of all, he didn’t charge the mound like a big leaguer should. Instead, he had to steal home plate. He didn’t even warn the Phillies he was planning on retaliating in this humiliating, jerk-ish way. What a jerk.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: -1.3
Running into a wall
One of the reasons so many logical baseball fans hate Bryce Harper is because he ran into a wall. Total jerk move. This kid was a catcher for most of his life, and suddenly he’s in the outfield, running into walls. Some call this reckless, some call it playing with heart. But we can all agree that it’s being a jerk. Without even thinking about the wall, his teammates, or the plight of lower income Eskimo refugees, Bryce crashed hard into that wall. Next time concentrate on something else, jerk!
JERK-O-METER SCORE: -.7
Calling a reporter out for asking a clown question
When a reporter tried to trick the underage Mormon Harper into saying he imbibed in Canadian beer, Bryce totally called him on it! He uttered the five funniest jerk words in baseball: “That’s a clown question, bro.” Not only did this reporter probably go home crying for being humiliated, but Bryce also coined the most overused meme and fodder for unfunny jokes in sports pop culture.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: .01
Idolizing his father
Harper has made it very clear on several occasions that he models himself after his father. Yes, you read that correctly. While other young stars strive to be like the uppity, deceitful, too-big-for-their-britches veterans who had occasional relations with Hooters waitresses resulting in illegitimate love children and the continuation of poor grammar, hypocritical beliefs and Affliction brand t-shirts, Harper picks the jerkiest of all jerks to serve as his inspiration: the hard-working steel engineer that raised him to always do his best and be the best person possible. WHO. DOES. THAT. Well, Ron. Ya failed. JERK.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: -2.2
Running out fly balls
What the? Who does this? Bryce Harper has the huevos to show unbridled enthusiasm for the game of baseball while running as hard as he can whenever he hits the ball anywhere. He obviously doesn’t care about his knees, joints, or tendons enough to use a mild pop fly as an excuse to rest his 20 year old legs while hoping for better fortune next time up to the plate. He must not care about the fans either, since he apparently doesn’t give a hoot about extra wear and tear on his ACL. He’s also showing up the lazy veterans who were 18 when Harper first picked his nose (jerk move) by not dropping his head and trotting to his inevitable spot on the bench. Who is this jerk anyways, and why does he have to try when it’s obvious there is no point in trying? No point. What an insufferable jerk. Also, is his name actually Harper? Has anyone seen this jerk’s birth certificate?
JERK-O-METER SCORE: -2.1
Endorsing Chipper Jones for the All-Star Game
Last year when Bryce was part of the All-Star Game Final Vote, he endorsed future Hall of Famer Chipper Jones over himself. What a jerk! First of all, don’t try to persuade me on who to vote for! And second, this false modesty, vote-for-the-veteran is totally bogus. It’s obvious Bryce knew that a year later Chipper would bash him on twitter, and was preemptively making him look foolish. Bryce is a wily jerk!
JERK-O-METER SCORE: -3.2
Befriending a cancer-stricken teenager
Okay, if we may be serious for a moment. Have you read the stories of how Bryce Harper befriended hospice patient Gavin Rupp? If not, do so now, and bring a tissue. At 20 years old, Bryce Harper was dealing with emotions that most of us could never handle. And while it may have been easier to make this into a 10 minute visit, Bryce struck up an earnest friendship, treating the whole Rupp family to a day they would never forget.
JERK-O-METER SCORE: There is no possible score for this honorable act