Eight charter buses filled with 500 Philadelphia Phillies fans started making their way down from South Philadelphia to Washington D.C.
The excited group was ready to cheer on their 3-0 team and Bryce Harper at his former home stadium, Nationals Park
It's Harper's first return to D.C. since signing with the Phillies and the Philly faithful want to offset what may be "boos" from Nationals fans.
"We had to see Bryce return, he's gonna be pumped up and he's gonna get the crowd going. They're gonna be booing, we're gonna be cheering. It's going to be a good experience," said Will Bradley of Upper Darby.
Joe diBiaggio bought a block of tickets at first level right field, next to Harper's outfield position. He made the major purchase for the "Phans of Philly" traveling group even before the $330 million Harper signing was official.
"I locked in the tickets before he even signed hoping that he would actually sign; now, we're taking over with 500 people so it definitely paid off." said diBiaggio.
Before returning to Nationals Park, Harper took to social media writing a love letter to D.C. fans:
"If you would have told me 5 years ago I would be walking into Nationals Park as an opposing player, I would've told you that you were crazy. Five years later, I'm doing just that. I remember the first day I walked into Nats Park. My first base hit. My first home run. And, of course, my first standing ovation. Nationals fans delivered that first ovation.
The things that I will miss most are the relationships I gained on a personal level with so many of the Nationals staff and workers around the ballpark. Every day I walked in, I got a smile or shared a laugh with you. I especially want to thank the Lerner Family and Mike Rizzo for their unwavering support during my tenure with the Nationals.
The city of DC was home. Filomena's, The Silver Diner, The Italian store, and countless other places helped make it feel like home. You, Nationals fans, made me one of your own for the entire time I was a part of the Nationals organization. I'm so blessed to have been able to play for a fan base that cared so much about myself and the team each and every night. You will always hold a special place in my heart no matter what. I look forward to continuing Harpers Heroes with LLS in DC as well as making sure the legacy fields bearing my name are the best youth fields in town!
When I run on the field tonight I am sure to hear some boos, but I will always remember the cheers and the screams that are still with me right now, as I start my new chapter. So for that, DC, THANK YOU."
Phillies fans travel to Washington D.C. for Harper's return
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