It’s Spring Training time in baseball, so perhaps a manager can be forgiven if he forgets a players name or two. But, forgetting a superstar…that’s a whole different ballgame.
That’s exactly what is happening for Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker though, as CBS’ Eye on Baseball reports. If Baker is to be believed, Bryce Harper isn’t Bryce Harper, but instead “Royce”.
By the way, Dusty Baker keeps accidentally referring to Bryce Harper as 'Royce.' Twice so far.
— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 24, 2016
It’s perhaps a nice homage to the style of play from the superstar though, as Harper is one of the best hitters in all of baseball. He hit a career-high .330, had 42 home runs and 99 RBIs and had an OPS of 1.109 en route to being named the National League MVP in 2015.
Given Baker’s loose nature in the clubhouse and jovial nature overall, perhaps he is having a bit of fun at the outfielder’s expense. Then again, Baker is 66-years old himself and the memory could be fading a bit too.
Maybe he’s confusing Harper with Royce Clayton, who played under Baker with the Giants from 1993 to 1995. But that was 20 years ago, and Clayton was a light-hitting middle infielder – not a power-hitting outfielder.
Clayton also looked nothing like Harper.
Either way, these two are sure to be acquainted with each other well by Opening Day.