Bryce Harper and his preternatural ability, his magnetism anywhere on a baseball diamond, will spread murmurs and chills throughout Nationals Park for years to come. The first time came Tuesday night. Even if the Washington Nationals and their dismal offense are blown out, even if he goes hitless and strikes out in his first at-bat, even if the place is half-full, Harper will still find a moment to amaze.
In his first game at Nationals Park, a listless 5-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks before 22,675, the park came alive in the seventh inning when Harper settled underneath a flyball and began pumping his feet on the left field grass. The runner at third base crouched. The ball landed in Harper’s glove. The roar swelled.