Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper has reached out to teammate Jonathan Papelbon to make amends following their dugout altercation in September, reports Thomas Boswell of The Washington Post.
Harper reportedly called the relief pitcher in hopes of ensuring the two could have an effective relationship as teammates during the coming season.
“Papelbon and Harper are fine together,” a Nationals source said. “Harp just wants to win. All he cares about is that we have a 45-save relief pitcher who’s going to help us.”
The fight began when Papelbon and Harper exchanged words as Harper walked back to the dugout during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies. The conversation escalated when the pitcher lunged at Harper’s throat. Papelbon was suspended for four games by the team after the incident.
After being acquired from the Phillies in a midseason trade, Papelbon recorded seven saves for the Nationals in 2015, bringing his season total to 24.
The Nationals went 83–79 last season and missed the playoffs, finishing in second place behind the New York Mets in the NL East.
- Beth Maiman