Before he was ejected in the eighth inning of last night’s game, Bryce Harper singled in his first at bat to extend his hit streak to 18-straight games and on-base streak to 26-straight games. Harper finished the night with a .334/.437/.628 line on the season, but his hit and on-base streaks weren’t what people were talking about after the game.
It was his ejection for arguing with home plate umpire Chris Segal about a 1-0 pitch he didn’t think was a strike. Harper took the pitch, gestured emphatically that he thought it was low, and then exploded on Segal after he struck out swinging at a 98 mph 1-2 fastball from Milwaukee Brewers’ reliever Josh Hader.
It wasn’t an egregious strike call by Segal (No. 2):
Harper humorously(?), as quoted by ESPN’s Eddie Matz, blamed the ejection on the song he was listening to before the second of three with Milwaukee:
"I think I need to change my playlist because I get a little fired up...'5AM' really got me fired up, by Logic. I called my brother and was like, ‘Man, I'm so fired up to play today.' I guess it got me a little too fired up. I guess I need to mix in some Temptations and some of those jazz bands to calm me down a little bit."
Dusty Baker said after the Nationals’ 8-5 win that he was fine with Harper’s emotional reaction.
“I’d rather have a guy that plays with emotion than a guy that plays with no emotions, you know?” Baker said.
“I’ll take that guy every day. You don’t have to pump him up to get him psyched to play. The first pitch on him, in a big situation, was questionable and that’s what he objected to, and then he struck out, that just sent everything his emotions to the top and over the top.”
The Nationals won the game, rallying for eight runs between the seventh and eighth, and taking an 8-5 decision that set up today’s rubber match in the nation’s capital.
HERE’S THE LINEUP FOR TODAY’S FINALE WITH MILWAUKEE IN D.C.:
#Nats vs. #Brewers 3 of 3: Goodwin CF, Difo SS, Harper RF, Zimmerman 1B, Murphy 2B, Rendon 3B, Lind LF, Lobaton C, Scherzer P— federalbaseball (@federalbaseball) July 27, 2017