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MLB Hands Suspensions to Harper, Strickland, Appeals Forthcoming

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USA TODAY

 

San Francisco Giants pitcher Hunter Strickland received a six-game suspension and Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper a four-game ban for their roles in a bench-clearing brawl Monday, Major League Baseball announced Tuesday.

Harper, the leading All-Star vote-getter in the National league, and Strickland decided to appeal and will remain eligible to play until the process is complete.

"It's part of the game, I guess," Harper said before Tuesday's game against the Giants. "It's so crazy that it even happened. I was sitting there talking to my parents this morning at breakfast; it's just crazy that it even happened yesterday.

"After three years, to do that, I don't know what was going through his mind or how upset he was the past couple of years. If he did have a problem with it, he could have talked with me during batting practice and say, 'I didn't like they way you went about it.' That's not human nature, I guess."

Strickland says he has the "ultimate responsibility" for his actions but did not express regret for hitting Harper.

In apparent revenge for a dispute between the two that took place during the 2014 National League Division Series, Strickland drilled Harper on his thigh with a 98-mph fastball in the eighth inning of Washington's 3-0 victory, inciting a brawl.

In that 2014 series, Harper homered twice off Strickland and yelled at him during the second trip around the bases.

Both players exchanged blows Monday as the dugouts and bullpens cleared, and both were ejected.

Related: Harper Charges Mound in Nationals, Giants Brawl

Strickland thinks the bad blood is over between the clubs and he didn't expect the Nationals to retaliate.

"I hope not," he said. "I think it's done."

Harper Charges Mound in Nationals, Giants Brawl
 
May 31, 2017
 
 
 

 

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