Lucas Duda also claims to have been given food poisoning from Shake Shack at Citi Field

6 Comments

Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg lost six pounds in two days, and blamed it on a hamburger he ate this past weekend at the Mets’ Citi Field. Now he has a corroborator, and it’s someone from the home team.

Mets first baseman Lucas Duda had to be hospitalized on Friday because of an upset stomach and told Danny Knobler of ESPN New York that he believes the cause was an under-cooked burger at that same Shake Shack, which draws long lines to the center field concourse every game and is often praised for its high-quality food.

A Mets official told Knobler that an investigation is underway. And here’s a statement from Shake Shack senior marketing manager Greg Waters:

“The first we heard of this situation was about an hour ago via Twitter. “We’re attempting to get in touch with Ryne Sandberg to learn more. At this point we have no further knowledge of the situation, and there have been no other related reports whatsoever. Food safety is of paramount importance to us, and we’re connecting with our management team at the Citi Field Shake Shack now to discuss further and find out more.”

To be fair: If this were a common, major issue, the place probably wouldn’t get such great reviews.

Bryce Harper will not be discussing his impending free agency with the media

Getty Images
3 Comments

Bryce Harper is entering his walk year and it is widely expected that the Scott Boras client will, indeed, test out free agency next fall rather than engage in any substantial way with the Washington Nationals about a contract extension. There were some “casual conversations” between the parties in the early fall of 2017, but the Nats came away from that, quite reasonably, believing that Harper, who stands to land the largest contract in baseball history, will shop around.

For his part, Harper met the media on his first day of spring training workouts and let everyone know that, no, he does not plan to answer questions about his potential free agency every day between now and November. From MASN:

“Just want to let you guys know I will not be discussing anything relative to 2019, at all,” said Harper. “I’m focused on this year. I’m focused on winning and playing hard, like every single year. So if you guys have any questions about anything after 2018, you can call Scott and he can answer you guys.”

Makes sense. The alternative would be for Harper to give the same canned “I’m only focused on our next game” responses in front of his locker 150 times this summer, and that doesn’t serve anyone.

Thinking back to any other impending free agent’s comments about his free agency, I can’t remember a story along those lines which was worth much of anything. The genre generally consists of headlines which oversell an innocuous or offhand comment from a player as a means of guessing where his head is at with respect to his current team. I can’t think of any story in which a player, during his walk year, said something that concretely and definitively signaled his intensions in free agency one way or the other.

Reporters covering the Nationals who are curious as to how Harper feels about his current team at any given time would be better served just observing and inferring, with particular attention paid to how Harper and his teammates view the Nats’ competitive position as the season goes on, how they react to trades and stuff like that. There’s a lot of guesswork in all of that, but it sure beats trying to get a media savvy player like Harper to admit, after going 1-for-4 against the Phillies, where he plans to spend the next seven to ten years of his professional life.