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Washington Nationals' Davey Johnson On Bryce Harper: "I Like Him Just The Way He Is."

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WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 8: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals adjusts his batting gloves while on deck against the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park on September 8, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Ned Dishman/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 8: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals adjusts his batting gloves while on deck against the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park on September 8, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Ned Dishman/Getty Images)
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"Nats' skipper Davey Johnson was asked Friday night if he thought other teams around the league were bothered by the ultra-aggressive 19-year-old Nats' outfielder. 'No," the 69-year-old skipper said, 'Because that's baseball. Everybody likes Pete Rose and the way Pete Rose played. [Bryce] Harper is like that. He's full bore. What I do like with Harp, he's learning, he's playing smarter, he's understanding what they're trying to do to him at home plate. He's even hitting the cutoff man now. A lot of things.'

"Harper's constantly forcing the issue. In the first inning of Friday night's win Harper tripled, hustling around second in spite of his third base coach telling him to hold up. 'Bo [Porter] was trying to hold him at second,' Davey Johnson told reporters after the game, but Harper, Johnson said, 'He was having no part of that.'


"When Ryan Zimmerman grounded back to the mound in the next at bat, Harper waited for Cubs' starter Justin Germano to throw to first and then broke for home. Cubs' first baseman Anthony Rizzo tried to throw him out, but it was too late to catch Harper.

'As soon as the pitcher goes, he's gone,' Davey Johnson said, 'He doesn't care if the [first baseman] is right-handed of left-handed. He's going.'"

• Read the entire story at SBNationDC...