"Some day there will be a player that will slip through the cracks because you just couldn't get the phone call in," DC GM Mike Rizzo said while discussing the chaotic last-minute negotiations the Washington Nationals just went through with Bryce Harper and his agent Scott Boras to Sirius/XM MLB Network Radio hosts Kevin Kennedy and Jim Duquette this morning on "The Power Alley", "...you had a deal and you couldn't get the phone call in and you lose a player because of it." According to which source you believe the Nats and Harper had twenty to twenty-six seconds left before the deadline to sign 2010 Draft picks last Monday night when they finally agreed on a 5-year/$9.9 million dollar deal major league deal. Scott Boras told the same MLB Network hosts earlier this week that the, "...creativity that allowed the deal [between the Nats and no.1 overall pick Bryce Harper] to get done was something that really arose in the last three minutes." Good thing the call got through...
• Below are the highlights of what the DC GM had to say during today's interview:
Rizzo on Bryce Harper: "When we were playing the Dodgers we actually met with Bryce in Dodger Stadium, and he's gained about 14 really, really good pounds, he's put on another half-inch, he's about 6'3'', about 220[lbs] right now and he looks like a man. He reminds me of Justin Upton's body. They're not the typical 17-year-old player's bodies, so that's the first thing that jumps out at you.
Rizzo on Bryce Harper: "...we really think that the power is going to be useable power and not just raw power, because he's got a great approach at the plate. I've seen him hit several balls out of the park oppposite field, he's got great power to left field and left-center..."
Rizzo on Strasburg and Zimmermann: "We've taken a hard stance on his pitches, his innings that he's going to throw. We're going to do the same thing with our other premiere guy, Jordan Zimmermann, who's coming back from Tommy John, we're very, very focused in on these guys developing, we're certainly not going to rush them...to try to get an extra win or two this year..."
Rizzo on Strasburg's comments on Harper before Harper signed: "I was there in the clubhouse, not right there, but I heard him say that and I did a double-take and it was like, "Wow..."
Rizzo on Strasburg's comments on Harper: "This obviously was not scripted or anything like that, he came out and said that...you know, he's so beloved by his teammates, Strasburg, and that's I think part of the reason, is, 'Hey, you want to be with us, we're gonna support, you but if you don't want to be with us, you know, next guy, le't go, we'll get another guy that wants to be here...'"
Rizzo on Wilson Ramos' debut: "The biggest surprise to me, I don't know if it was a surprise to the other people in our system who really liked him, but he called a marvelous game with John Lannan, a pitcher he's obviously never seen before."
Rizzo on signing Adam Dunn: "We're certainly not going to wait until the season's over, we've been in communications with his agent Brian Peters and Greg Denske, they know our feelings towards, Adam, we really like Adam, we love him in the clubhouse, he's become a leader in the clubhouse and on the ball field, and he's a definite presence in the four-hole in the lineup for us, and brings good numbers to us. So, we certainly are talking, we're trying to get something done because we think that he's a big part of our future and he makes everybody in that lineup so much better and we're working at it diligently every day."