Photo of the Day: Bryce Harper may regret this one

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With all apologies to Will Leitch, the below photo, from his GQ interview of Bryce Harper — which the good people of GQ gave us permission to run — may be the best part of the interview:

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To reiterate, my thing on Bryce Harper: he’s young and brash and says stuff I’d never say. But that doesn’t matter. He’s 19 and I’m 38. And even if I choose to carry myself like an old man because it suits me, if ever comes the day when young stud athletes who are ridiculously confident in their abilities cause me to grouse negatively about them for that reason alone, I’m just gonna give up.  He’s fun. I want him to be big and loud and crazy because that’s what youth is all about.

That said, I can’t imagine that there won’t be a day at some point when he really wishes he didn’t let the photographer put the baseball in his mouth.  Like maybe today. Because if I was on the Nats, I’d be plastering that thing all over the clubhouse today with an impromptu caption contest.

Fried, Braves go to salary arbitration for 2nd straight year

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Brett Davis/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Pitcher Max Fried went to salary arbitration with the Atlanta Braves for the second straight year, asking for $15 million instead of the team’s $13.5 million offer.

The 29-year-old left-hander went 14-7 for the second straight season and lowered his ERA to 2.48 from 3.04 in 2021. Fried was a first-time All-Star last season, was second to Miami’s Sandy Alcantara in Cy Young Award voting and was third in the National League in ERA behind Alcantara and Julio Urias with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Fried won a $6.85 million salary last year instead of the team’s $6.6 million proposal in arbitration. That was after he pitched six shutout innings in World Series Game 6 as the Braves won their first title since 1995.

Fried, who is eligible for free agency after the 2024 World Series, had his case heard Friday by a panel that’s expected to issue a decision Saturday.

Players have won two of three decisions so far: Pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Miami Marlins. But Seattle defeated Diego Castillo ($2.95 million).

A decision is being held for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe, whose case was argued Monday. About 20 more cases are scheduled through Feb. 17.