ATLANTA -- Alex Rodriguez is a sports junkie first and foremost and he's looking forward to seeing the Bryce Harper show in person.

"I love big talent, I love unique talents," Rodriguez said before Wednesday night's game against the Braves. "Just seeing a 19-year-old doing some of the things he's doing is pretty darn special. I'm excited to see him."

Rodriguez and the Yankees will see Harper, who has seven homers and 19 RBIs in 41 games, and the first-place Nationals starting Friday night in Washington.

A-Rod, of course, is among the few players who knows what Harper is experiencing. Rodriguez made his big-league debut as a hyped 18-year-old in 1994 with the Mariners. .

"I had three years where I couldn't get into bars with my teammates," Rodriguez joked of one thing he remembered about coming up as a teenager.

Of Harper's talent, A-Rod didn't pinpoint one aspect.

"I love everything," Rodriguez said. "The power, he's electric, very good base runner. Reminds me a little bit of Larry Walker. Fearless. That type of talent . . . I'm a huge baseball fan and he's the kind of guy I would pay my money to watch him play. And I'm sure well after I'm done I'll be paying my money to watch him play and breaking all the records."

 

Robertson's return

David Robertson, on the DL since May 14 with a strained left oblique, joined the team Wednesday and all indications are he'll be activated Friday. "I'm just glad to be back," he said of going back to the setup roll as Rafael Soriano has excelled as the closer. "I'm just glad to be here."

The likely roster move when Robertson is activated will be to send down Cody Eppley, who has pitched reasonably well in three separate stints with the club.

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