Jimmy Rollins isn't the only player caught up in meaningless team drama this season. It seems MLB golden boy Bryce Harper is in similar trouble with the Nationals, being called out and benched by his coach, Matt Williams, for failing to hustle.
I know what you're thinking. "No hustle on a ground-out? WHY DOES BRYCE HARPER HATE AMERICA?"
Obviously, you would be totally correct to think that way under normal circumstances. But it is worth nothing that Harper is playing with a strained quad, and not running out a play an infielder makes 98% of the time is worth not sitting out 5-6 weeks.
So you'll have to figure out which flawed, archaic concept you buy into less - that Harper should be running hard on each and every play (something they told him not to do last year) or that Harper should play injured.
Of course, it wasn't too long ago that Harper's hustle was not only fine, but a flagship of the franchise.
This afternoon, things didn't improve much for Harper. The normally quiet Nationals crowd was characteristically quiet.
That had to sting for Harper; the way the fans barely had a notable reaction, almost like it wouldn't be worth noting that they had one at all. But it's okay, Harper said he "respects" Williams' decision, and today, back in the lineup, clearly showed signs of redemption.