NEW YORK – Let's put it this way: Nobody looks better when he's kicked out of a game than Bryce Harper:
Bryce Harper did not have it tonight 😡 pic.twitter.com/DwnzRMtX46  – ESPN (@espn) April 23, 2019
Harper was ejected for the 12th time in his career in the 5-1 defeat of Philadelphia Phillies against the New York Mets on Monday, but that was at least the case is an exhibition of modern art worthy of being shown at the Guggenheim. Consider the mechanics of this ejection:
(2) He first had Phillies manager Gabe Kapler jump out of the dugout, causing additional tension and confusion over what exactly was going on.
(3) Note that Harper slipped on the Dugout steps in his rage, which he was accused of after arbitrator Carl Carlson. This could have been a catastrophic moment for Harper and the Phillies, an unusual injury if he had his ankle or knee turned.
(4) Kapler shoved him out of the way before Harper got to Carlson. Perhaps a happy break for the Phillies, given that Kapler may be the only manager with the appropriate upper body strength to stop Harper.
(5) Harper left with a touch of fame and continued to roar, pointing to Carlson, his wonderfully hot-haired hair on full display.
OK, seriously, it's not just fun and games when you lose your 3-in-hand halfway through a 2-1 game against a Key Division opponent. Harper admitted that after the game.
"It just can not happen, in a game like this, against the Mets, the division opponent, things like that just can not happen," he said and this team too. We are a better team with me in the lineup and I have to stay in this game. These games are important. They are important now, they are important in September. "
Teammate Jake Arrieta, who made up the loss in the game, warned Harper after the game," We need him in the right field. I do not care how bad the referee is. He was not great for either side. I'm out there. He's trying to make sounds, and he's missing some calls. Well, we need [Bryce] out there.
Kapler was obviously not happy after the game, though he defended Harper and said that Carlson's ejection was not fair. "There was normal chirping from the dugout that's in every dugout every night," he said. "It was not different."
Still, after Harper had hit four thugs from the ejection, the chirping had obviously put Carlson's patience to the test. As suggested by Arrieta, the ultimate responsibility of the player is to stay in the game. In the video you still see Harper at the top of the Dugout. He could have said his silence as he moved away from the pastry box and then melted on the bench.
Of course, Harper is not new to spills. Among the active players, only Matt Kemp with 14 more – and Kemp six years before Harper reached the majors. Yunel Escobar is in third place on the active list and I am not sure if he is still active, considering that he was last in the big leagues in 2017.
Is Harper too much hothead? Does he have a reputation with the referees, fair or not? Hard to say. His 12 casts are from 12 different referees:
|Aug 29, 2012||CB Bucknor||Call at the First Base (throwing a helmet)|
|5/5 / 2013||John Hirschbeck||Certified swing (hit with bat, helmet)|
|13.7.2013||Hunter Wendelstedt||Third beat|
|May 13, 2015||Rob Drake||Checkered Swing|
|5/20/2015||Marvin Hudson||Balls and punches|
|31.07.2015||Jerry Meals||5 / 9/2016||Brian Knight||Balls and punches|
|27.08.2016||Mike Winters||Third strike (bat)|
|29.5.2017||Brian Gorman||fighting (helmet thrown)|
|26.7.2017||Chris Segal||19659020] Balls and punches|
|20.09.2014||DJ Rayburn||The third hit|
|4/22/2019||net Mark Carlson||Balls and punches|
Harper had no explanation for this ejection. "I'm from zero to a hundred anyway, so I feel like all of my throws, it's usually pretty quiet and then 'bam', as soon as it happens, try to let it out, I think."
But Harper is no longer a young child. He's in the majors in his eighth season. He knows that questionable calls are part of the game – and the two in the fourth inning were not even so questionable. As one of the expected leaders of the team, Harper can not afford to cross the line or give an umpire an excuse to send him to the shower early.
He knows that. "I have to stay in the game for the organization, the fans, I have to do better," he said.
The Phillies also dropped back after the ejection, with Mets-Pitcher taking the last 16 thugs in a row as the Phillies dropped their fourth game in five. Harper has to do better on Tuesday, but the rest of his teammates.
Elsewhere on Monday …
Arenados Big Night: The Rockies beat the Nationals 7-5 and it was the Nolan Arenado Show. He hit two doubles, a home run in the seventh inning for his 1,000th career strike, and made a crisp 5-3 double to finish the game. Here's the Home Run:
– Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) April 23, 2019
Arenado had a terrible start with no home race and six RBIs in the first 15 games of the team. Not coincidentally, the Rockies started 3-12. However, with four home runs and nine RBIs, he has scored 10: 28 in the last seven games, and the Rockies have lost seven out of eight – lost on Saturday against the Phillies.
Cardinals Beat Brewers Pitching: The Cardinals converted a 5-4 lead into a 13-5 win with seven runs in the seventh inning behind the Milwaukee Bullpen. The seven runs came from some Cardinals baseball of the 1980s: hits and walks, no home runs. The Rally:
SEVEN RUN SEVEN!
Single, 2 runs
– St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) April 23, 2019
Earlier in the game, Paul Goldschmidt threw his ninth home run and Dexter Fowler hit his way to a 4: 5 night for the first time. Fowler beats .313 / .403 / .433 and even plays again with Harrison Bader and Tyler O'Neill in the IL. Is he back after a terrible 2018? I'm not so sure. We did not update Statcast numbers after this game, but before he got in, his average exit speed was actually lower than last season and he was credited with zero barrels. Presumably he has one after his home race and only to see that the brand ".313" has to do something for his self-confidence next to his name. By the way, if it seems that pitching relief has generally been worse this season, it has. Bullpen ERAs have risen from 4.07 to 4.39. The ERAs of the starters are now almost the same (4.19 in 2018 and 4.21 in 2019).
Pirates suffer a double loss: Joe Musgrove sailed with a 4-1 lead in the seventh inning, as he took part in a walk and a single and Clint Hurdle went to the bullpen. Kyle Crick stepped in and JR Murphy hit a colorful single and Blake Swihart hit an infield single, and the locks opened when the Diamondbacks scored seven in the inning and four in eighth.
Worse, the loser Nick Burdi collapsed ground aching after throwing a pitch in the eighth. Burdi had reached the majors last year after returning from the Tommy John operation in 2017, and had played like a key-tooth in the Pittsburgh Bullpen with 17 strokes in 8ings innings.
The pirates said that Burdi had a right elbow biceps pain. "It's really quiet around the clubhouse," Musgrove said after the game.
Polanco punishes Astros: The twins look more and more like a team that makes Cleveland run AL Central. They defeated the Astros 9-5 when Jorge Polanco took four RBIs 4: 5, including the home drive with line drive:
– Minnesota Twins (@Twins) April 23, 2019
Polanco is up to .392 / .452 / .716 with 13 extra -based hit. Unlike Fowler, the advanced metrics support the warm start with a higher exit speed and a higher hit rate than last season. He also got the ball more in the air (31.7 percent compared to 19.3 percent in 2018). After Byron Buxton was successful and Jonathan Schoop made a solid start, this lineup is quite deep. Heck, Jason Castro traded on Monday and their three-headed Catching Platoon – Mitch Garver and Willian's Astudillo are their other two stops. As good as Polanco was, the guys behind the record were the best hitter of the Twins.