Phillies

Bryce Harper gives his side of the story after unexpected ejection

Phillies

You've seen Bryce Harper ticked off after ejections in the past.

There is even a YouTube reel of it.

But he did not think his ejection Saturday night at Citi Field was warranted. Harper was tossed quickly by first-base umpire Roberto Ortiz after his at-bat in the fifth inning. Harper lined a ball down the first-base line and it was close but ruled foul. The AB ended with a groundout.

Between innings, Harper asked Ortiz about the play and was ejected immediately. Here is Harper's explanation:

"First of all, when I get thrown out of a game, it's usually very warranted, I usually go 0 to 100 and it's like, you should be thrown out, and I understand it.

"I said man, I've got that pretty fair, what do you think? It was not confrontational at all, not upset about it, asking him what he thought. I did not think I was gonna get the reaction I got.

"He said to me, 'I don't even wanna hear you, I don't wanna talk about it, no.' When he said that it was like, woah, don't go big mad on me that quick. 

"I had no confrontation in my voice. I don't understand why it turned to what it did. Neil Walker was standing with me right there the whole time. I said don't talk to me like I'm a 5-year-old. Just be a professional with me, let's have a conversation. I said be professional about three or four times. I said just be professional please, and that's when he banged me.

 

"There are times in my career I go ballistic and I say words I shouldn't be saying on national television. But in this moment tonight, I did not think it was very warranted for him to throw me out when I was not upset about the play or about grounding out.

"I've never even gone into detail about what I usually say, but tonight I just didn't think that was warranted. I hate being thrown out of games when I believe it's not warranted."

The Phillies lost the game, 5-1, ending their five-game winning streak.

Harper has hit .149 over the last two weeks without a home run. He was given the night off Friday by manager Joe Girardi. Harper said Saturday night that he needs to be better and the last thing he or the team needed was for him to get tossed in the middle innings.

"In this moment, with those four innings left, I've got to be in that game. I want to be in the game," Harper said. "I didn't want the confrontation. I didn't want to get thrown out of that game at all in that situation. There was no negativity in my mind about getting thrown out of that game. I couldn't be happier. We're winning. We're going about it, nine out of 10, you know what I'm saying? It's just so frustrating when you're trying to go out there, and you're trying to catch a team and trying to go to the playoffs, and you get tossed."