That’s right, the Astros and Nationals are back in the headlines. However, this time it is because one player has changed sides from the AL champion, to the NL champion. Will Harris has reportedly agreed with the Washington Nationals to a 3-year $24 million deal. Just over two months after Harris and his Astros lost in the World Series, he will be joining the team that beat them. Harris was part of most likely the best pitching core in the entire MLB last year, and he is the second big name to leave the Stros this offseason, after Gerrit Cole signed with the New York Yankees.
Harris, although quite old at the age of 35, will be a fantastic addition for the Nationals. Last year he recorded a 1.50 ERA, 62 strikeouts in 60 innings, 26 holds, and four saves. In October, he was even more locked in. Harris slung his way to a 0.93 ERA and struck out 11 in 9 2/3 innings in the post season. Also, interestingly enough, Harris was part of the 14th ever multi-pitcher no-hitter game in MLB history this season. This combined effort no hitter came against the Mariners on August 3rd.
Oddly enough though, without explicit finger pointing, Harris was the one who lost the World Series for the Astros in October. Will Harris gave up the go-ahead home run to Howie Kendrick in game 7 of the series. This was the shot that the Nationals ended up taking home the trophy with. Harris lived a real life nightmare that game, but now he is ready to rejoin the action.
Here are Harris’ comments on the life-changing pitch: “It was more a tip-of-the-cap thing for me. There’s no bitterness or anything like that from my end. Would I have liked for it to go another way? Of course. But there’s a lot of moments in my career you wish would’ve gone another way, and you just can’t do it. That’s just the way it is. That’s sports. I’m looking forward to playing and maybe one day get myself back into that situation and maybe it’ll go differently.” (per MASN)
Harris is a class act, and his disposition is no doubt a sweetener for the Nationals as they extended $24 million to him. Perhaps Harris will be remembered in Washington D.C. as a hero of that incredible season last year as well. Harris says he hopes to be in the same position again, throwing the same pitch. It is quite likely the Nationals could be there again, as the Nationals have the NL third-best 14-1 odds for winning the 2020 World Series.