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Bryce Harper tossed after arguing call

September 21, 2018

Bryce Harper has tried his best this season not to get ejected from games.

But he was not able to stop from getting tossed Thursday night, as he was ejected in the last of the 12th inning as the Nationals lost 5-4 to the New York Mets.

Harper, days away from being a free agent, was thrown out of the game by home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn after he argued getting called out on strikes.

Anthony Rendon then grounded out for the last out of the game as the Nationals fell to 4-10 in extra-inning games this season.

“He was walking away (from the umpire). I don’t know what he said,” manager Dave Martinez said of Harper. “I was really surprised. He walked away; I don’t think he showed him up at all. It was just weird.”

Harper, who was not available to the media, walked for the sixth time in a row in his first at-bat in the first inning Thursday. He singled in the last of the 10th but was stranded.

He is now hitting .246 with 34 homers, 97 RBI and 97 runs scored and still has a chance to finish with 100 RBI for the first time in his career.

Starting pitcher Max Scherzer was not involved in the decision but fanned 13 batters and now has a franchise record 290 strikeouts this season.

But he gave up two homers and allowed three runs in seven innings. Scherzer said he had a slight mechanical issue that can be easily fixed.

“Two bad pitches,” Martinez said of Scherzer, who has 17 wins with two more starts left in the year.

Rookie of the year candidate Juan Soto had an RBI double to tie the game in the last of the eighth inning for Washington. “I didn’t want to just tie the game. I wanted to win the game,” Soto said.

The outfield playing surface had problems after heavy rain in the region for the past week.

Nationals second baseman Adrian Sanchez thought he injured himself after going for a fly ball early in the game. “It rained all of last week, so I felt like it was a little soft out there,” he said. “I did get a little scared, especially when my left foot plugged in a little bit. But luckily it didn’t go into anything serious.”

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