The Nationals fall from grace continues.
I guess this is what happens when you're picked as World Series champs to begin the season, and fail to make the playoffs altogether.
Jonathan Papelbon, the Nationals' closer and a guy known all around the league to be a terrible teammate and a generally tough guy to be around, got into it with Bryce Harper during a game over the weekend.
Papelbon has been causing trouble all around the league - Boston, Philadelphia, and now Washington - for years now, and the only reason he gets away with it is because he continues to be a great closer. Otherwise, no one would put up with this.
After Harper hit a popup that Papelbon - who joined the team mid-season, I should add - felt he didn't run out, Papelbon yipped at the MVP favorite when he came back into the dugout.
Harper chirped back and Papelbon went after him.
You can watch the video here.
Look, maybe Papelbon has a point - you should always run out a ball hit in play, even a popup. And Harper knows that.
But no teammate should ever go after another like that, much less in the middle of a game, much less still in front of the rest of the team.
The Nationals are frustrated as a team because of the way they have fallen apart at the hands of the Mets' magical season and I understand that tensions are probably running high.
But that's no excuse.
Here's a screenshot of the fight. You can see that Papelbon goes after the star outfielder's neck. Not OK.
I don't like Harper, but I do respect the guy. After the Mets clinched, Harper said he was rooting for them to win the whole thing. He's a professional, and he's allowed to hate the Mets because they rival his team, but he's not an asshole.
The same can't be said about Papelbon. The guy's a nightmare, and should be released immediately.