Nats’ Bryce Harper needs 10 stitches from bat bash injury
Cincinnati, OH, United States (AHN Sports) – Washington Nationals rookie slugger Bryce Harper vented his frustration on his bat after a bad hitting night by slamming it against a dugout wall.
Unfortunately, the bat hit back, hitting Nationals’ third baseman above eye level and giving a nasty cut near his left eye that needed 10 stitches to close.
“It’s just a little frustration,” said Harper, whose hair was still blood-stained as he spoke with reporters at his locker. “It doesn’t hurt at all. I feel fine. I didn’t get light-headed.”
The incident happened after Harper grounded out in the seventh inning against the Cincinnati Reds.
He finished the game hitless in five at-bats, including three strikeouts. It was the second time in a 12-game career that he failed to reach base at last once.
The Nationals still handily beat the Reds, 7-3, behind homers by Danny Espinosa and Roger Bernadina and outstanding pitching by Gio Gonzales, who struck out nine.
“It wasn’t the bat splintering. It actually came back and hit him in the head, so I’m sure there’s going to be some swelling in there,” said Nationals manager Davey Johnson, according to mlb.com.
“I’m not going to take any chances. We’ll see how it is [Saturday], but more than likely he’ll miss a couple of games,” Johnson said.
The cut was originally tended to with some butterfly bandages, but the blood flow continued until Harper received the stitches.
“He was very frustrated that he was not centering the ball, and that’s what ballplayers do — break bats,” said Johnson. “Now I’m only going to let him throw helmets. That’s not anything new. It’s an easy way to get rid of your frustrations.”
Harper has picked up a nickname because of the incident. Shortstop Ian Desmond has dubbed him “Bam Bam”.