Bryce Harper and Matt Williams were both ejected in the bottom of the third inning against the New York Yankees on Wednesday night in a bizarre sequence sparked by a called first strike.
Home plate umpire Marvin Hudson called a strike on the first offering from pitcher Adam Warren to Harper and the Nationals right fielder appeared to disagree. That generated an argument about Harper getting back into the batter's box.
Harper demonstrated with his left cleat that he was digging in to take the next pitch. Hudson ejected him shortly after he made the gesture.
That brought Williams out of the dugout, as the manager pushed Harper out of the way to talk to Hudson. Third base umpire Jim Joyce rushed home to intervene and Williams was quickly thrown out. Before leaving the game, Williams kicked dirt on to home plate to show his displeasure.
Bench coach Randy Knorr took over to manage the rest of the game, while Michael Taylor replaced Harper.
Harper was also ejected on May 13, exactly one week prior. After that ejection he had this to say, among other things:
“I don’t like getting talked down to by an umpire. I respect the umpires as much as I can, but to tell me I’m going to act like that, I gave him a piece of my mind.”
Harper and Hudson have a history together, as they argued about a check swing in a Nats-Braves game back in August of 2013.