When it comes to sports, Washington is the home of losers and crybabies.
That’s why the city can’t understand why Bryce Harper left.
The Washington Post described his decision to leave DC for Philly: “He left adulation and a city that loved him for a new start in America’s No. 1 town for boos.”
Actually, Harper left a fickle fan base that doesn’t support a team when it isn’t winning. Philly supports both winners and losers, with far more knowledge about the games than DC. Before the Washington Capitals won the Stanley Cup last year, the city hadn’t seen a major sports victory in nearly 30 years.
Just a side note on the oft-repeated slander about Philly and boos—mainly dating back to Eagles’ fans throwing snowballs at Santa.
As Philadelphian Brian White explained before last year’s Super Bowl, Santa and the Eagles deserved it.
“It turns out that 54,000 Eagles fans at Franklin Field had a lot of reasons to be angry on that snowy Dec. 15, 1968. They arrived to find their seats buried in snow.”
The team was 2-12, its worst record in a decade.
“So here it is, a miserable day in a miserable season in a miserable city, and the miserable Eagles are getting ready for their miserable halftime show, complete with cheerleaders and a brass band,” White wrote. “There’s just one problem. There’s no Santa. He was stuck somewhere in New Jersey, trapped by the snowstorm.”
A team staffer saw a man dressed as Santa in the crowd: 19-year-old Frank Olivo, a skinny, scruffy kid without presents and an equipment bag filled with damp towels.
“Here come the boos. Here come the snowballs,” White wrote. “Of course, it wasn’t really about Santa. It was about a terrible team with a terrible owner and a terrible coach, and a city that had had enough.”
The Phillies paid Harper a lot of cash. But that’s because Philly wants to win and understand how to make it happen.
From his first news conference, it appears that Harper feels rather comfortable in his new city. He decided not to wear his old uniform number, 34, in deference to the Hall of Famer Roy Halladay. His jersey became the fastest seller ever.
He praised the blue-collar spirit of Philly, reminding people that his father twisted rebar in Las Vegas to support his family.
“I think you’re always remembered for winning, and what better place to do it than in Philly?” Harper told reporters.
As for the boos, those come with the territory from fans who really understand the game.