Bryce Harper's and Max Scherzer’s pregame handshake drew quite a bit of attention Thursday night, thanks to its similarity to Harper’s recent dugout dustup with Jonathan Papelbon.
In an amazing piece of coincidence, Harper and complicated-greeting artist Scherzer have actually been doing a choking handshake for at least a month, predating Papelbon putting his hand on Harper’s throat and drawing a four-game suspension from the team. (The Nationals said in an email that Harper and Scherzer have been doing the handshake all season.)
In the earlier video, one difference is that both players choke each other. On Thursday night, only Scherzer choked Harper, which made the handshake look more like the Papelbon incident and likely set off the wave of reaction.
The post has been update to correct that the choking handshake did not debut on Thursday night.