BY CAM ELLIS
In what was met with a mixed reaction, Jonathan Papelbon made his first appearance in D.C. since being suspended four games for fighting with Bryce Harper last September.
There were audible cheers and boos when Papelbon came in to pitch the 9th inning of the Nationals 4-3 exhibition win over the Minnesota Twins. The closer set down all three batters he faced while striking out two.
After the game, manager Dusty Baker commented on the boos.
"The better he performs, the better the crowd will be for him because we need him," Baker said. "We need him big time. We need to let bygones be bygones. Things happen in baseball. The thing we have to realize is that he's on our side. Jeering him and getting on him is not going to help the situation because you want to come home and feel that home is where your heart is."
"So, let's cheer him rather than jeer him."