Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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The San Francisco Giants and Washington Nationals had a bench clearing brawl that started as Hunter Strickland threw at Bryce Harper in the first pitch of his 8th inning at bat, hitting him in the hip.

He and Strickland have previous, with Monday's clash the first time the two had met since Harper hit two home runs off the pitcher during the 2014 National League Division Series between the Nats and Giants. Any time the Nationals and Giants played in 2015 or 2016 and Strickland was on the mound with Harper coming to the plate, San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy summoned a left-hander for the matchup. Bryce Harper was huge in that series, getting two key home runs against Giants reliever Hunter Strickland. On the way, Harper threw his helmet at Strickland. His eyes were wide as he flung his helmet _ it sailed wide of Strickland, it might've slipped _ and they started swinging away.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were reportedly ejected after the fight.

Harper, who had hit two monstrous homers against Strickland in the 2014 playoffs and not faced him since, felt no need to take a deep breath in the midst of the belated retaliation. "Harper hits one in (McCovey) Cove in a big spot off him, from what I understand".

Too long in the estimation of Harper and his teammates.

"I don't want to go on a baseball field and try to fight somebody", Harper said. I don't even think he should be thinking about what happened in the first round. Manager Dusty Baker rejoined the team after missing the weekend to attend son Darren's high school graduation. Those were the lone plate appearances for Harper against Strickland until Monday's melee.

Ryan Zimmerman hit his 14th homer, off Matt Moore (2-6) in the second. Glover worked a 1-2-3 ninth, his sixth save in six chances, ending the afternoon as quietly as it began.

Nationals: INF Stephen Drew, out since April 12 with a right hamstring strain, was reinstated before the game.

Former Giants pitcher Barry Zito performed two songs from his "No Secrets" album during a Memorial Day ceremony before Monday's game.

Giants: Utilityman Eduardo Nunez was evaluated for concussion symptoms after suffering a head injury while scoring on a passed ball on Sunday. Neither man responded responsibly to the situation, which had little bearing on the Nationals' eventual 3-0 win. Gonzalez has received three consecutive no decisions and overall is 3-1 with a 2.90 ERA over 62 innings.

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