Report: Bryce Harper’s suspension reduced to three games
Multiple sources are reporting Wednesday that Bryce Harper’s suspension for his role in a brawl with Hunter Strickland that occurred during Monday’s tilt between the Washington Nationals and San Francisco Giants has been reduced by one game.
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal was the first to report the news that instead of serving four games, Harper will instead serve only three.
Source: Bryce Harper’s suspension has been reduced to three days.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) May 31, 2017
Sources later confirmed the same to ESPN, who also reported Harper will begin serving his suspension in Wednesday’s game against the San Francisco Giants. Harper is eligible to return to the Nationals lineup for Sunday’s game against the Oakland A’s.
Harper rushed the mound after Strickland plunked him in the hip during the eighth inning of Monday’s game. After throwing his helmet at Strickland while charging the mound and missing, multiple punches were thrown by both players, who were both fined an undisclosed amount along with the original suspensions. Harper, as noted, was originally suspended four games while Strickland was assessed a six-game suspension.
Discipline issued following Monday's incident between the @Nationals and @SFGiants. pic.twitter.com/xG6cqJbnn5
— MLB Communications (@MLB_PR) May 30, 2017
MLB chief baseball officer Joe Torre, when explaining the league’s respective punishments, cited that Strickland intentionally hit “Harper with a pitch, inciting the bench-clearing incident and fighting,” resulting in his suspension.
Harper’s suspension, meanwhile, was prompted by “charging the mound, throwing his helmet and fighting.”
Major League Baseball obviously abhors incidents like the one that transpired between Harper and Strickland, not to mention the ensuing fallout when the benches cleared amid the frenzy.
While one current superstar player has taken an old-school approach when reacting to Monday’s dust-up, the case can be made that bench-clearing brawls are not in the league’s best interests.
The decision to reduce Harper’s suspension to three games, however, seems to muddy the message the league is trying to convey about such incidents.