By Brian Tinsman

WASHINGTON — The Washington Nationals’ exhibition game vs. the Boston Red Sox at the Naval Academy in Annapolis created a tradition worth continuing in the future.

The Nats not only put on a good show on the field, ending in a 4-4 tie, but also embraced the Naval Academy experience. Bryce Harper wore All-American, screaming eagle patriotic cleats and signed autographs for fans near the porta-potties. Jayson Werth flipped someone the bird on broadcast TV. But nothing beats manager Dusty Baker gleefully gesturing with an officer’s sword:

⚾⚓️🗡That's one way to start the weekend 🗡⚓️⚾

A post shared by @ nationals on

In terms of in-game highlights, the best visual was watching Harper load up a golf cart and go in search of his home run ball in the outfield:

Now that the exhibition slate is complete, the Nationals can shift their focus to games that matter. Baker will have to trade his sword for a fungo bat, and Harper may need to let others find his home run balls, but those should be small prices to pay for a regular season with high expectations in Washington.


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