Bryce Harper (31-Philadelphia), who was recently fined $5,000 (approximately $675) by the Major League Baseball office after being ejected for protesting an umpire’s call, has said he finds the fine “unacceptable” and intends to appeal.
Major League Baseball’s website, MLB.com, reported on Wednesday (Aug. 3), “Harper’s fine is nothing compared to the size of his salary, but it’s not about the amount of money. It’s an issue with umpire Angel Hernandez, who ejected Harper,” and “Harper will appeal to the commissioner’s office.” Harper signed a 13-year, $330 million contract with the Phillies ahead of the 2019 season.
Harper’s ejection occurred during a home game against Pittsburgh on March 29 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. Harper, who was batting third and starting at first base, walked to load the bases with one out in the bottom of the third inning with the score tied 1-1.
He battled Luis Ortiz, 24, to a full count before stopping on a low, six-pitch slider. Harper immediately prepared to walk to first base, apparently convinced of a double, but third base umpire Hernandez, who was asked to review the pitch, raised his right hand and called a swinging strike.
After seeing Hernandez called out, Harper walked toward the third base line and yelled at the umpire to show his displeasure with the call. The third base umpire promptly ordered him out. As he walked back to the dugout, Harper threw his helmet into the stands as the crowd cheered him on.
Replays on the replay screen confirmed that Harper’s bat did not spin on his swing. It was a clear error by Hernandez. “I’ve never seen a call like that in my life. The third base umpire’s call was not fair,” said the Philadelphia broadcaster.
Harper told the media, “It’s not the first time Hernandez has been called wrong. It’s the same story over and over again every year,” Harper told the media, adding, “Once again, I was penalized for something I didn’t do.”
The problem is that Hernandez has been the center of many of these controversial calls.
In 2021, Harper was ejected from a game in Washington after angrily protesting a strikeout call by Hernandez. Hernandez has a reputation for clashing with players, including last year when Harper’s teammate Kyle Schwarber, 30, punched his bat and helmet around home plate after Hernandez called him out for striking out.
He also has a history with Korean players. Hernandez drew the ire of Korean fans when he made a series of calls against Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto) in his start against the Colorado Rockies on May 2 that failed to distinguish between balls and strikes. Bae Ji-hwan (24, Pittsburgh) and Choi Ji-man (32, San Diego) have also been victims of Hernandez’s errors at the plate. 스포츠토토
“Hernandez became the lowest-rated umpire in the 2023 regular season,” MLB.com reported. “Hernandez, who only returned to the field in August due to a back injury, made a whopping 161 errors in 10 games,” the outlet said, citing data from The Umpire Auditor. “His season may be over, but his errors will live on in fans’ memories.”
Harper, meanwhile, is a power hitter with a .281 batting average, 306 home runs and 889 RBIs in 1508 games over 12 major league seasons. This season, he hit .293 with 21 home runs and 72 RBIs in 126 games. After finishing second in the National League East, the Phillies swept Miami in the Wild Card Series in two games to advance to the League Championship Series. They will face first-place Atlanta.