Wire Taps: Washington Nationals' Bryce Harper Links, Tweets, Etc.

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL - MARCH 05: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals talks with third base coach Bo Porter #16 during a preseason game against the New York Mets at Digital Domain Park on March 5, 2012 in Port St. Lucie, Florida. (Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)

• Bryce Harper hustles. Bryce Harper swings like Ichiro. Bryce Harper's aggressive on the basepaths. Bryce Harper's patient at the plate, looking to have good at bats this Spring and he holds grudges against pitchers he's faced in the minors. There's no bigger story this Spring, but it's not the only storyline worth following, especially since the likeliest outcome in Harper's case is bound to be a letdown for those expecting him in right field on Opening Day. Four games into Spring Training, however, anyone who's seeing Harper play for the first time has to be impressed. Other stories? John Lannan's first start of the Spring was essentially a microcosm of what you've come to expect from the 27-year-old left-hander, a lot of runners on and an ability to somehow escape trouble with the help of some strong defense. Hard to miss the contributions by both Steve Lombardozzi and Zach Walters last night. Waldis Joaquin? Hmm... What about Eury Perez? Nice to get a look at the 21-year-old outfielder. Links and lots of 'em, RIGHT NOW!! And the Nats and the Braves at 1:05 pm EST. MLB Gameday Audio appears to be the only way to follow along... it's the Braves' feed only though, oh, and there will be a GameThread... but now LINKS...

• THE BIG STORY!!!:

via Twitter: Andy McCullough, Star-Ledger, NJ.com (@McCulloughSL): "Was in clubhouse when Harper beat out a routine grounder to 3rd. Reaction among players was almost awe, mostly confusion. 'How the . . .'"

• NATS BEAT:

• "Even on overcast days in D.C., they can see the Capitol from the upper deck at Nationals Park. And on a clear day, they can see a rotation that unsettles their opponents, wins regularly and probably excludes Lannan." - "Washington Nationals see John Lannan as valuable arm in stable" - Marty Noble, nationals.com: News

• "'[Shoot], he’s 19,' [Davey] Johnson said. 'I asked him the other day, I said, ‘Are you tired?’ He said, ‘You see the girl with the red lips over there?’ He’s not tired.'" - Davey Johnson on Bryce Harper - "Bryce Harper does not get tired, Davey Johnson says" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'They're hits. That's all that matters,' Harper said following tonight's game. 'If they're on the ground, through the hole, up the middle or anything like that, they're hits.'" - "Bryce Harper channels ... Ichiro?" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "He's a great player,' said Harvey, who struck out Harper twice during their previous meeting in the Minors. 'I'm just trying to stay positive and hope I can stay healthy and get there.'" - "Bryce Harper shows patience, speed as Washington Nationals beat New York Mets" - Anthony DiComo, nationals.com: News

• "'He hustled,' Manager Davey Johnson said. 'He plays hard. He’s a throwback. He plays the game right.'" - "Bryce Harper hits ‘Ichiro’ single, hustles, goes 2 for 2 against the Mets" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "The grounds crew rolled up the batting practice mat and removed the blue tarps protecting the infield as the crowd of 5,021 trickled into Digital Domain Park..." - "Fans turn out for Mets' spring training opener in Port St. Lucie" - Alex Boerner, TCPalm.com

• "Having been the Nats Opening Day starter two of the last three seasons, this is no doubt a different kind of spring for Lannan..." - "Nats get first win of the spring" - Craig Heist, WTOP.com

• "'The main thing we are trying to get his feel for his fast ball,' Menhart said. 'The changeup, breaking ball and all the off-speed pitches are fine.'" - Harrisburg pitching coach Paul Menhart on Danny Rosenbaum - "Nationals' Rosenbaum focusing on fastball start of camp" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "[Wang] threw a total of 31 pitches, 24 strikes, then retreated to the bullpen to another simulated inning and build up his arm strength." - "Wang looks sharp vs. minor leaguers" - Mark Zuckerman, NatsInsider.com

• "'He's more relaxed,' Nationals manager Davey Johnson said. 'Last year he was a little tense, and he said that helped make his swing tighter...'" - "Relaxed Ankiel homers for Nationals" - Laurel Pfahler, TCPalm.com

• "'I’ve competed for a spot every year, I feel,' [John] Lannan said. 'I never took a spot for granted.'" - "For John Lannan, a different kind of spring brings the same outlook" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "The lefty said he was pleased with the way he got ahead in the count more times than not, as he threw first-pitch strikes to eight of the 12 hitters he faced." - "Spring competition begins for Lannan (Nats win 3-1)" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com

• "Manager Davey Johnson was 'really pleased' with what he saw Monday afternoon from right-hander Chien-Ming Wang..." - "Washington Nationals right-hander Chien-Ming Wang looks good in intrasquad start" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

• "The most encouraging stat of the night: Lannan managed to get through three full innings on an economical 43 pitches (27 strikes)..." - "Lannan happy with first start" - Mark Zuckerman, NatsInsider.com

• "[Edwin] Jackson has thrown his jet-fueled fastball for six teams, none for more than two full seasons." - "Nationals pitcher, military brat Edwin Jackson Jr. is used to frequent moves and trades" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "Generosity is the most natural outward expression of an inner attitude of compassion and loving-kindness."

• NATSTOWN:

• "Donald Ray Mincher a former Minnesota Twin and baseball lifer in every sense of the word passed away yesterday in Huntsville, Alabama after a lengthy illness at the age of 73." - "Former Senators Don Mincher passes away" - John Swol, D.C. Baseball History

• "Hustling For First Spring Win" - NationalsProspects.com

• "Preseason Heartburn Rankings" - ouij, Natstradamus

• "There has been so much media attention toward the 19 year old phenom for the Washington Nationals, including a front page story on Yahoo sports today. Rightfully so." - "Bryce Harper goes 2 for 2, Nats grab first win" - Mark Buterbaugh, DC Pro Sports Report

• "Not really pleased with these box scores, either. ..." - Washington NationLOLs

• "Washington Nationals lefty was born on 03/06/1986 in St. Louis, Missouri. Detwiler was the Nationals’ first round (6th overall) draft pick in 2007." - "NATS: Happy Birthday, Ross Detwiler" - Cheryl Nichols, District Sports Page

• NL EAST UPDATES:

Phillies: "In the summer of 2008, my younger brother killed three hours on a bus in Latvia when a friend of his posed to him what I consider to be one of the best sports-related conversation starters I’ve ever heard." - "Constructing the Unbeatable Team, Volume 2" - Michael Baumann, Crashburn Alley

Mets: "In his debut as a Met, Andres Torres resembled his 2010 form, not the disappointing player from 2011." - "Mets' Matt Harvey, top pitching prospect, shaky in debut" - Andy McCullough, NJ.com

Marlins: "The apple green 'batter’s eye' at the Marlins’ new ballpark is being repainted black. But that backdrop in center field might not be the only distraction for hitters." - "Sculpture at Marlins Park might become issue for left-handed hitters" - Clark Spencer, Miami Marlins - MiamiHerald.com

Braves: via Twitter The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's David O'Brien (@ajcbraves): "Braves plan to play 1B Freddie Freeman on Tuesday for a couple of at-bats, one week after partially dislocating kneecap."

• OFF-FIELD LINKS:

• "If Mets players were at all unsettled by the legal tribulations of their owners, which continued to unfold Monday morning in Manhattan, they did a fine job hiding it." - "Mets Players Unfazed by Legal Case Involving Owners" - Andrew Keh, NYTimes.com

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