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Harper, Williams ejected vs. Yankees

May 20, 2015, 8:06 PM EDT

May 20, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper (right) and manager Matt Williams (center) react after being thrown out of the game by home plate umpire Marvin Hudson (left) in the third inning against the New York Yankees at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

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.

  1. SFNatsFan - May 20, 2015 at 8:22 PM

    Wasn’t paying attention to it live, but just saw the replay on Gamecast.

    All I can say is, WTF ump?

  2. thesciencebum - May 20, 2015 at 8:22 PM

    Something has to be done with the umpires throwing Bryce Harper out of baseball games. The umpires have the thinnest skin, and waste no time handing out the expulsion at the slightest mention of a disagreement with their judgement calls. Bryce has every right to respond to umpires that talk trash to players. It is obvious, even to the opposing teams, that the umpires are treating Bryce unfairly because of his performance so far this year.

    I call for a public and open investigation into the abuse and misuse of authority by these umpires. I want to know the names of the two umpires. I want to know how long they’ve been umpiring. I want a response from the commissioner of baseball addressing these concerns.

    • nattygoats - May 20, 2015 at 8:33 PM

      Excellent point. But nothing will be done. I have given up on football and NBA because of officiating.

    • dcphanatic - May 20, 2015 at 8:37 PM

      Oh please! Ryan Zimmerman took a third strike called, on a pitch as bad as the one that Bryce disputed. He shook his head, showed his displeasure without saying a word and marched to the dogout. Have news for you, umpires make bad calls. Works for both side. Bryce has to discipline himself. He cannot go around getting ejected like that. No mater what FP says, if he had just taken the strike and moved on he would still be playing in the game. If the umpire ask him to get into the box, jump and get into the f-ing box for Christ sake.

      • kirbs3256 - May 20, 2015 at 8:41 PM

        From what I saw, Bryce did not say a thing. Matt Williams was the one arguing. Which caused the whole thing to happen.

      • dcwx61 - May 20, 2015 at 8:47 PM

        you whack

  3. Joe Seamhead - May 20, 2015 at 8:31 PM

    Unreal. The fans come to see the players.

  4. donkort - May 20, 2015 at 8:34 PM

    Obviously, there’s a power play going on.

  5. kirbs3256 - May 20, 2015 at 8:41 PM

    The rules for violating the “get in the box” rule:

    Notwithstanding Rule 6.02(c), if the batter intentionally leaves the batter’s box and delays play, and none of the exceptions listed in Rule 6.02(d)(1)(i) through (viii) applies, the umpire shall award a strike without the pitcher having to deliver the pitch. The ball is dead, and no runners may advance. The umpire shall award additional strikes, without the pitcher having to deliver the pitch, if the batter remains outside the batter’s box and further delays play.

    • jalabar - May 20, 2015 at 8:51 PM

      Yes, no getting in the box is not grounds for ejection. It was bad umpiring.

  6. donkort - May 20, 2015 at 8:45 PM

    This reeks of the umpire “throwing the book” at Bryce for “disciplinary purposes.”

  7. nataddicted - May 20, 2015 at 8:46 PM

    I think he was tossed for what he said, it looked like something along the lines of “I WAS in the box.”

    • knoxvillenat - May 20, 2015 at 9:25 PM

      Which makes me think that Marvin Hudson will say that he threw Harper out because he was showing up the umpire and you can’t let that happen now can you.

    • bisonaudit - May 21, 2015 at 4:32 PM

      This is right. Bryce was in the box, then the umpire called time and went over to jack his jaw with the Nats dugout. After that, apparently he wasn’t quite finished because he wanted Harper to get his butt in the box when the only reason the player ever left it in the first place was because the umpire called time to go make a show of himself.

  8. TimDz - May 20, 2015 at 8:50 PM

    Old Marvin must not be getting any lovin’ at home and decided to screw SOMEone….
    He owes Harper a kiss…

  9. AlexandriaNatFan - May 20, 2015 at 8:58 PM

    Totally disagree with the comment of “jumping” whenever the umpire asks something. The umps are there to regulate play, enforce the rules and ensure safety. That’s it. They are not gods.

    That said, neither are players. Bryce has been hot headed before, it doesn’t sound like this was one of those times. If the ump said to get back in the box and Bryce was digging his foot into the box and said “I was/am in the box” then there is nothing wrong with that.

    General comment: I’ve been wholly unimpressed with umpires across the league. A lot of bruised egos running around right now. Umps need to accept that the fans come to the game for the players not the umps. This does not mean the players can steamroll umpires. But it does mean the umpires need to remember they play a supporting (albeit important) role in this.

  10. donkort - May 20, 2015 at 9:08 PM

    Let’s hope this causes Bryce to get four homers tomorrow!

    • NIWatcher - May 20, 2015 at 9:20 PM

      Won’t be tomorrow.

  11. donkort - May 20, 2015 at 9:21 PM

    LOL…I mean Friday!

  12. manassasnatsfan - May 20, 2015 at 10:30 PM

    Tossed last week and still won player of the week.

    Let’s do it again.

  13. snopes1 - May 20, 2015 at 11:42 PM

    This was Matt Williams’ finest moment as Nats’ manager. He was not in the least bit angry when he kicked dirt on the plate. It wasn’t grandstanding in any way. It was notice to MLB and the umpires’ union that Hudson was so far out of line that he either is going to stop trying to influence the outcome of games or the Nats are going to insist that he be fired.

    The Nats cannot let the umpires start playing ego games with Bryce Harper. Matt Williams let them know that tonight. I’m betting the umpire’s union quickly gets the message (and that Hudson gets a private warning and a stiff fine).





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