Wire Taps: Washington Nationals' Bryce Harper Makes Headlines Again, Nats Take On New York Yankees Today.

Mar. 14, 2012; Lake Buena Vista, FL, USA; Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper in the dugout prior to the game against the Atlanta Braves at Champion Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

• Just when you thought it was safe to talk about Bryce Harper's on-field skills again... Bryce Harper talked to reporters after last night's loss to Atlanta Braves, clearing up comments he'd made about how his calf strain would affect his chances of making the Opening Day roster in an interview with CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman. A clean-shaven and contrite 19-year-old Harper appeared ready to put some of the drama behind him as he got back on the field after a week on the sidelines. Then... a GQ profile entitled, "Is Baseball Ready for Bryce?", emerged this morning that has a foul-mouthed Harper talking to author Will Leitch, who once again captures the expletive-tossing 2010 no.1 overall pick in a less-than-flattering light, describing the Nationals' top prospect as a, "cocky, ornery, foul-mouthed," player who, "... seems to have emerged fully formed to piss off the baseball establishment." Chipper Jones is disappointed with those comments. Is it just Bryce being Bryce? A teenage phenom just being a teenager? A distraction from what's going on on the field? What happened to showing up at camp, keeping his "mouth shut" (his words) and trying to play his way onto the Opening Day roster?

• THE BIG STORY:

• "What makes [Bryce] Harper far more anticipated than your typical phenom is a sense that he not only recognizes the vastness of his potential but also feels plenty comfortable telling you about it." - "Is Baseball Ready for Bryce?" - Will Leitch, GQ

• "This photo of Bryce Harper, which appears in the baseball package of the magazine’s upcoming April issue, is fairly arresting." - "Bryce Harper in GQ" - Dan Steinberg, DC Sports Bog - The Washington Post

• NATS BEAT:

• "'It’s disappointing to hear,' Jones said. 'You’d like for somebody with his ability, being his first big league job, to be one of those kind of kids who’s practicing to be an ambassador for the game.'" - "Chipper Jones remembers what it was like to be a teen phenom" - Dave Sheinin, The Washington Post

• "It was the first time this spring Harper has played center -- a position he played just 20 times in his first professional season -- but Harper moved around a lot in 2011." - "Bryce Harper riffs on center field, his calf, the Yankees and still trying to make the Nationals" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "[Bryce] Harper returned to the Nats' lineup tonight, and after the game he said he still has his eyes set on the majors, even having missed nearly a week of action due to his calf." - "Harper's goal remains the same - big leagues or bust" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "'He runs good. He's 19,' Johnson said when asked why he pushed Harper to a relatively unfamiliar position." - "Harper's front and center for the Nationals for now" - Brian McNally, Washington Examiner

• "Before Wednesday's game, [Davey] Johnson warned the assembled media not to draw conclusions when it comes to [Bryce] Harper's future in the outfield." - "Bryce Harper's return comes in center for Nats" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• "'So I’m shooting to be one of the top of the top 25 guys on this team and get up there to D.C. and try to win. That’s my main goal.'" - Bryce Harper - "Bryce Harper plays center, clarifies approach to making Nationals, eager to face Yankees" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

AUDIO: "Danny Espinosa, Nationals 2B, joined "First Pitch" and discussed the expectations in Washington this season." - SiriusXM Sports

• "Western Kentucky comeback win features Nats fan" - Dan Steinberg, DC Sports Bog - The Washington Post

• "'That’s immaturity, yes,' Strasburg added, admitting — and agreeing with manager Davey Johnson — that he was overthrowing...'" - "Stephen Strasburg learns the hard way that velocity isn't everything" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "'You've got to believe in your stuff and you can't shy away from hitters, and I'm going to continue to do that,' [Stephen] Strasburg said.'" - "Strasburg admits 'immaturity' getting in the way of progress." - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "In three years, the Nats have been stunned by the sudden resignations of their general manager, team president and manager. All three times, the Nats ended up stronger..." - "Nationals have built a foundation based on smart decisions — and good luck" - Thomas Boswell, The Washington Post

• "'I didn't like what I was seeing,' Johnson said. 'He was overthrowing and missing his spots. Like I said before with power pitchers, he is just trying to get more out of it than he needs to..." - "Strasburg struggles, Harper in center as Braves beat Nats" - Craig Heist, WTOP.com

• "The reports are coming from the media. We are not actively shopping John Lannan. I'm receiving calls about him. We are going to be open-minded about it." - Mike Rizzo - "Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo addresses John Lannan, Bryce Harper in Q&A" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• "Randall Delgado, who is battling Teheran for the final rotation spot, followed with three scoreless innings before unraveling in the eighth." - "Stephen Strasburg allows two homers as Nationals fall to Braves" - Mark Bowman, nationals.com: News

• "He knows the results do not matter in spring, but he expects better of himself." - "Stephen Strasburg struggled against the Braves, but he knows why" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "While [Stephen] Strasburg showed impressive velocity early in tonight's outing, sitting at 97-99 mph and hitting 101 on the surely-juiced stadium gun, he struggled with his control." - "Strasburg lacking Strasburg-like stuff (Nats lose 6-5)" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "Inside the Nationals' dugout, the players who know what [Eury] Perez can do saw the play developing and began to root for a show. Hoping [Drew] Sutton would challenge Perez's arm." - "Eury Perez shows off his arm and other notes from the Nationals' 6-5 loss to the Braves" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "One American League executive believes the Nationals will not get much in return for left-hander John Lannan in a trade because he is not considered one of the top pitchers in baseball." - "Trade market for Lannan remains unclear" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• "Actually, it took Johnson about [430] minor league seasons before reaching the major leagues. Rendon is expected to be on a faster track." - "Will Nationals' Rendon be put on the fast track?" - Phil Wood, Washington Examiner

• "For [Michael] Morse and his strained lat, the concern is his throwing, not hitting." - "Michael Morse in no rush to test his throwing" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "A sense of concern for others gives our lives meaning; it is the root of all human happiness."

• SHARKNATSTOWN:

• "Apparently, while feasting on the Cardinals this weekend, the Shark chipped a tooth and had to get it removed." - "Even sharks need dentists" - Sharkadina

• NATSTOWN:

• "Normally, each team is supposed to bring a handful of starters with them for road games. For this one, the biggest names were the youngest on the team." - "Strasburg, Harper struggle a bit in 6-5 loss to Braves" - Dave Nichols, District Sports Page

• "Bert Shepard, a one legged veteran of World War II, tries out as a pitcher for the Washington Senators. The Senators owner Clark Griffith was so impressed with Shepard that he hired him as the team’s pitching coach." - "This Day in D.C. Baseball History – Wounded Veteran gets a Try Out" - Mark Hornbaker, D.C. Baseball History

• "Thursday and Friday will be a dream come true for Bryce Harper the Yankee fan." - "Sounds like Bryce Harper is excited to face his boy CC and the Yankees." - Nats Enquirer

• "Braves Outslug Nats, 6-5" - NationalsProspects.com

• NL EAST UPDATES:

Mets: "'I talk about patience. Right now, I’m out of it. I’ve got to regain it. I’ve got to go home tonight and have my wife beat me up so I can find my patience again.'" - "Mets' Terry Collins knows having David Wright back on field now is crucial" - Jeff Bradley, NJ.com

Marlins: "'I don’t have any problems at all,' said Sanchez, whose first start was pushed back because of soreness in his upper back, near his surgically repaired right shoulder." - "Strong outing by Miami Marlins’ Anibal Sanchez eases shoulder concern" - Clark Spencer, Miami Marlins - MiamiHerald.com

Phillies: "As Ryan Howard navigates through the clubhouse in a walking boot, it's clear the big slugger won't be in the Philadelphia Phillies' lineup anytime soon." - "Phillies look for ways to replace Ryan Howard" - Rob Maaddi, The Globe and Mail

Braves: '"I'm ready to go,' Hudson said. 'The back is not a concern to me. I've just got to start getting my arm, legs and everything else ready to go.'" - "Hudson throws after getting clean bill of health" - Mark Bowman, braves.com: News

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