Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper was held out of the starting lineup on Sunday. A team spokesman said that Harper’s absence from the line up is just to rest the knee after Harper got plunked by a pitch on the previous day.
During Saturday’s game against the Brewers, Harper came to bat with one out in the top of the ninth, with the Nats’ leading 7-2. Brewers reliever Michael Blazek threw a 95 mph fastball that hit Harper on his left knee. Im sure Nationals’ fans held their breath after the young slugger was struck by the fastball. Harper slumped over holding his knee and then very gingerly walked off the field in some noticeable pain. Matt den Dekker pinch ran for Harper and stayed in the game in the bottom of the ninth.
“It hurts,” said Harper after the game, still with a visible limp. “Really bad. … Squared me up pretty well. 95 to the knee doesn’t feel very good. We’ll see what happens tomorrow and see if it feels good.”
Reports say that Harper showed no signs of a limp on Sunday before the game and looked to be walking normally, but for precaution he was left out of the starting lineup.
There is no word yet if Harper will be in the lineup on Monday. The Nats’ open up their series with the Tampa Bay Rays Monday night from Tropicana Field at 7:10 EDT.