Earlier this week on the official Washington Nationals blog, star outfielder Bryce Harper declared that this offseason he'll pursue his EMT and firefighting certification as a backup plan. You know, in case that seven-year, $19 million contract he signed doesn't work out.
Here's the full context:
From @jayraynet: If you weren't playing ball, what would you be doing?
Bryce: I'd probably be a firefighter. Ever since I was growing up, I wanted to be a firefighter or a baseball player. Going into the offseason, I'm going to get my EMT and do the firefighting thing so I have something to fall back on.
Harper is an easy player to root for. While many athletes often come off as selfish or aloof to their public personas, Harper has been nothing but genuine during his short time in the majors.
It's absolutely believable that he wants to be a firefighter and EMT, even more believable that he's going to do it. Why shouldn't he? During the offseason he'll have nothing but time on his hands, and setting a goal like being a certified firefighter can only motivate him to train harder, although the Nationals certainly don't want their young investment rushing into a burning building any time soon.
Over the past few weeks Harper has been in the All-Star conversation, enough so that #Brycein12 was trending on Twitter earlier this week. The young slugger didn't seem bothered by all the fan attention, though.
Of course I want to be there and be in the All-Star game, but if it doesn't work out, hopefully I've got 20 more years in my career to get back there, Harper told the media on Tuesday. If my numbers don't show it, I don't think it's good for the game.
The 19-year old Harper won't be an All-Star after all. It was announced he finished behind David Freese and Michael Bourn in MLB voting.
In early June Harper hit a deep homer into the second tier of seats in Toronto's Rogers Centre. It's well-known that Harper is a Mormon and doesn't drink, yet a reporter still asked him if, since the drinking age up north is 19, he would have a beer to celebrate the blast.
Harper responded by saying, That's a clown question, bro. The phrase has since inspired its own brand of microbrew, the profits of which are donated to the family of a killed police officer.
So, yeah, it's not that hard to see him as a firefighter.