Sure, Jonathan Papelbon would come back and play for the Red Sox

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There are no rumors that the Phillies are selling. Yet. But Rob Bradford of WEEI, having learned that the Red Sox are on Jonathan Papelbon’s no-trade list, asked the Phillies closer whether he’d entertain a return to Beantown:

“Yeah, I could see myself in Boston,” he told WEEI.com. “I could see myself pitching in New York. You know me. I’ve always been the kind of guy who … I don’t really just settle, or accept things. Whatever happens in my future is going to happen. I’m not blind to that fact.”

On one level, a totally innocuous “this game is going to take you where it wants to take you and I just need to accept it” kind of answer. On another level, red meat for the Boston press which, after spending several years there, Papelbon probably shoulda realized would be made into a bigger deal than it really is.

Kind of a distraction. I mean, really, Red Sox fans are WAY more focused on trying to drum up “Cliff Lee to the Sox at the trade deadline” noise to allow this to get in the way.

Bryce Harper is pandering hard to Philly fans

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Bryce Harper hadn’t even addressed his new hometown fans before his Phillies jersey started selling like hotcakes. Since then, he’s said all the expected things. Talking about joining the Phillies, he said, “From day one, it felt right … I always talk about family and being a family, being one unit, and I get that from this team. Every guy has your back and vice versa. I’m very excited to go into battle with these guys.”

Harper is continuing to pander hard to Phillies fans. Behold his latest Instagram post:

Has anyone ever really longed to see the Liberty Bell?

Harper also famously recreated that Chase Utley scene from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia with actor Rob McElhenney on Twitter:

In Harper’s next post, he will talk about alternating bottles of You-eng-ling beers with glasses of “wooder.” He’ll add that every so often he will treat himself to a steak sandwich with cheese on it, then go home to watch all of the movies in the Rocky series.