Do you remember when Bryce Harper hit a long home run off Hunter Strickland in the 2014 NLDS and stared it at for a long time? Maybe? Kind of? Yeah, I’d moved on, too. But apparently Strickland remembers it. And he wanted to make a statement.
That was the third plate appearance for Harper vs. Strickland, and this is the first one that didn’t end up with Harper hitting a home run. Progress!
If you’ll remember, Harper stared at one of those homers a little bit:
And when Strickland chirped, Harper stared some more:
It took nearly three years for them to meet again — because, good lord, why would you let Strickland pitch to him again — and when they did, there was a delayed kerfuffle. It took three Giants to drag Strickland off the field:
It took Kontos, Mac and Pence to get Strickland off the field: pic.twitter.com/TP9tETsME3— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) May 29, 2017
I mean, you haven’t lived until you’ve seen Mac Williamson gently, politely, but firmly try to grab another grown man’s legs.
As usual, this stupid baseball fight happened because baseball players can be stupid. A quick ranking of jackassery:
- Strickland, for not letting go of something that happened in 2014,. Even Duane Kuiper said, “I don’t blame Harper for going out. Not one bit.”
- Harper for using his helmet as a weapon and then looking like someone who has never thrown anything before in his life.
- Strickland for acting like a goofball when his own teammates were trying to separate him from the scrum:
That’s about it. Buster Posey didn’t do a whole lot behind the plate, but that’s probably because he remembered that the Giants actually won the series in 2014, which was the bestest plunking of all. You can see the dawning realization when Harper is almost out there. “Oh, right! I’m supposed to do something!”
The punches were real, and so were the collisions. Jeff Samardzija and Michael Morse collided something fierce, which means there was about 13 feet of man-mountain exploding in the middle of the diamond.
Bryce Harper goes after Hunter Strickland after an HBP and then Mike Morse and Jeff Samardzija are collateral damage. pic.twitter.com/jton90huP5— Nick Bromberg (@NickBromberg) May 29, 2017
There are two more games left, too, so I’ll assume that Buster Posey will get hit before the end of the series. This isn’t over.
The important thing, though, is that it was stupid. And a little exciting! But mostly stupid.