A couple of Thursday morning thoughts while you try to comprehend how a World Series game started by Cliff Lee and Tim Lincecum wound up featuring 18 combined runs and 12 combined pitchers...
Bryce Harper's performance in his third Arizona Fall League game didn't quite match those from his first two. The 18-year-old right fielder went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts yesterday in the Scottsdale Scorpions' 7-6 loss to the Mesa Solar Sox.
Not that an 0-for-4 showing is worth getting all worked up. I believe Adam Dunn's had a few of those in his career, and I also believe a majority of you out there still want the Nationals to re-sign the big slugger.
Actually, the three most notable things about yesterday's AFL game as far as I'm concerned were the following...
1) Harper threw out a runner at the plate.
2) Mike Rizzo was in attendance at HoHoKam Park to watch Harper and other Nats prospects in person.
3) Harper doesn't wear batting gloves.
I'm surprised that second point hasn't been noted by anyone before. Apparently, he's been doing it for a while -- though he did use gloves at the instructional league in Viera because it was so humid there -- and he intends to continue doing it. "I probably won't use batting gloves at the bigger level," Harper told Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune. "They got that mud they rub on the ball, which is sticky so I'll use that. It helps."
Other developments from the AFL yesterday...
-- Derek Norris continued to show his good eye and patience at the plate, drawing three walks in four plate appearances. The 21-year-old catcher ranks third in the AFL with nine walks (and third with a 1.167 OPS) in eight games.
-- Cole Kimball pitched a scoreless eighth inning, recording a strikeout. The right-hander has allowed only one run and three hits in six innings of AFL work, striking out six while walking one.
-- Second-round draft pick Sammy Solis, who struggled a bit in his last outing, is slated to make his third start today. The lefty faces the Surprise Rafters at 3:35 p.m. Eastern.
In other news, you may have heard the Nationals are planning to unveil new uniforms during a November 10 event reserved for season-ticket holders. The new home white jerseys are expected to feature script lettering as opposed the block "Nationals" that has graced the front of the jersey since the club arrived in town in 2005. It'll make the uniform look more, well, uniform with the rest of the ensemble, from the curly W caps to the script "Washington" road jerseys.
I'll reserve final judgment until I actually see the new look, though I have to say my preference would have been to remove the word "Nationals" from the home jersey altogether and simply go with a red curly W logo on the left breast and some red piping around the collar and down the sides of the front of the jersey. Kind of like the Detroit Tigers' home uniform. I think that's a simple, classic look. I love the script "Washington" on the gray road jerseys, but the word "Nationals" just doesn't look good to me in script. Plus, so many teams have script lettering on their home jerseys, with the traditional underline. Why not do something a little less standard while still maintaining a classic (and uniform) look?