The Washington Nationals and Atlanta Braves took part in an intense divisional series this past season in Atlanta. In the midst of that series, Braves’ fans took it upon themselves to boo Washington outfielder Bryce Harper.
Possibly in response to that reception from the hometown fans, Harper appeared to drag his foot so as to kick dirt on the Atlanta logo that is cut into the dirt behind home plate on his way up for an at-bat on Saturday night.
The Braves did not take too kindly to that gesture, with the team’s Twitter account even getting involved.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) August 10, 2014
As the otherwise meaningless incident gained steam as an actual thing worthy of attention, Harper responded on Sunday. To hear the young outfielder tell it, there is nothing to see here. From MLB.com:
“That’s the last thing on my mind when I’m walking up to the plate. I really had no idea. When [a Nationals spokesperson] came up to me, I had no clue that I did anything,” Harper said. “Seriously, that’s the last thing on my mind going to face [Aaron] Harang or [Craig] Kimbrel or somebody like that. I had no idea why that was such a big deal. Of course, that’s the last thing on my mind.”
Whether it was intentional or not, we should know soon enough if the Braves find it to be disrespectful. If they do, then you better believe that the self-appointed police of unwritten rules will be sending a pitch in Harper’s direction in short order.