By Sam Bush
As the Washington Nationals won the 2019 World Series, the biggest side story was about Bryce Harper.
The superstar centerfielder had just left the Nationals in free agency after seven years, signing with division-rival Philadelphia Phillies on a 13-year, $330 million deal.
Still, D.C. won it all without the former National League MVP, leading many to believe Harper would regret his decision to leave.
Well, according to the six-time Major League Baseball All-Star, he predicted the Nationals would win the World Series before he even left.
Harper relived his free agency recently on Barstool Sports’ Starting 9 podcast, noting that he thought the Nationals’ acquisition of pitcher Patrick Corbin would put the team over the top.
“I said to Scott [Boras], I said, ‘They’re going to win the World Series,’” Harper said. “He looked at me dead in the eye and said, ‘No chance.’ I go, ‘I promise you they’re going to win the World Series.’”
During his time in Washington, Harper started feeling like they were always one pitcher away from a championship squad.
After inking a deal with Corbin for six years and $140 million in December, the Nationals finally had the missing piece.
“They were always one pitcher away,” he said. “They finally got that pitcher. And they used (Corbin) perfectly in the playoffs. They had the three horses, and I knew they were going to score runs, they’re a really good team. I knew that if they got into the playoffs and got through that first round, they’re going to win the whole thing.”
Harper signed his massive contract with the Phillies in March. And while he says he loves Philadelphia and doesn’t regret his decision, part of him still wished he and the Nationals could have agreed to terms so he could spend his whole career there. “You look at all the best guys in the past that have stayed with their team their entire career, that’s really cool,” Harper said.