Phillies Superstar Discusses What Upset Him During Benches-Clearing Incident

Bryce Harper shares what was going through his head prior to the benches clearing during the Philadelphia Phillies' series finale on Wednesday.
May 27, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Bryce Harper (3) stands on the field during a break in the action against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning at Oracle Park.
May 27, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Bryce Harper (3) stands on the field during a break in the action against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning at Oracle Park. / Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
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The Philadelphia Phillies are heading into their off day on Thursday having avoided a sweep against the San Francisco Giants.

They haven't been playing their best baseball, losing two consecutive series for the first time all year, but having their bats wake up for the finale has to feel good for the trip back home prior to their six-game slate.

Winning the contest was overshadowed in the grand scheme of things as the fourth inning incident where benches cleared became the headline when Bryce Harper clearly took exception to having two fastballs from Giants pitcher Kyle Harrison run up and in on him.

After the first one, the superstar gave the young starter a stare and exchanged some words. After the second one appeared to hit him, he just stood there at home plate while players in both dugouts poured onto the field.

Nothing happened beyond that as cooler heads prevailed, but the sequence of events led to questions about why things escalated to that point.

Harper shared what was going through his mind, recalling the time where he was hit in the face by a fastball three years ago.

"I just don't want to get hit in the face again. That's about it. I just don't want to get hit in the face," he said according to Scott Lauber of The Philadelphia Inquirer. "You get hit in the face, man, it's not fun. That's about it."

What added another layer to this entire thing was this event happened on the same day where Harper charged the mound in San Francisco during a game in 2017 to go after reliever Hunter Strickland.

Things were much different this time around.

"He wasn't meaning to ... he didn't mean to ... I wasn't really that mad. Just throw the ball over the plate," the superstar added.

This will ultimately be a tiny footnote in the saga of the 2024 season, something that probably won't even register on Philadelphia's radar by the time they get later into the year where they're hopefully competing for a World Series title.

But, it's clear that Harper hasn't forgotten about the time he was hit in the face with a baseball.

No one can blame him for that.


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Brad Wakai

BRAD WAKAI

Brad Wakai graduated from Penn State University with a degree in Journalism. While an undergrad, he did work at the student radio station covering different Penn State athletic programs like football, basketball, volleyball, soccer and other sports. Brad currently is the Lead Contributor for Nittany Lions Wire of Gannett Media where he continues to cover Penn State athletics. He is also a contributor at FanSided, writing about the Philadelphia 76ers for The Sixers Sense. Brad is the host of the sports podcast I Said What I Said, discussing topics across the NFL, College Football, the NBA and other sports. You can follow him on Twitter: @bwakai