MLB Absolutely Needs to Listen to Bryce Harper and Figure Out a Way to Let Stars Play in Olympics

Phillies star Bryce Harper taking some hacks in a Spring Training game vs. the Red Sox
Phillies star Bryce Harper taking some hacks in a Spring Training game vs. the Red Sox / Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Baseball was set to be featured as an event in the 2020 Olympics for the first time since 2008 before the games were postponed until next year. There was just one problem, though: much like in the old days, no MLB players would've participated. While an amateur roster has its advantages (hello, 1984 Mark McGwire!), this made one of the faces of the league very upset, and rightly so.

Former National League MVP Bryce Harper showed his dismay over not being able to play in the games during the Starting 9 podcast this week, calling the fact that he couldn't represent his country a "travesty" that must be dealt with.

Harper's main point was that if baseball wants to become a global game and expand its audience, why wouldn't the best league want to market its best stars on the biggest international stage?

The Phillies outfielder has a great point that MLB officials should definitely listen to. Even though this would need to involve a pause during the MLB season, which would hurt players who weren't participating in the Olympics, the chances to expand the popularity of the game should outweigh that. The league wouldn't even be the first North American sports league to pause their season for the Olympics -- the NHL halted their season in favor of the Olympics for almost 20 years and made it work, of course.

Hopefully, the league will follow Harper's call and eventually let MLB players represent their respective countries on the diamond. However, it seems for now that the league is reluctant, which will only leave them the World Baseball Classic as an opportunity to represent their home countries.

Hopefully, Harper's on that roster, at least.